I have had some experience with wikis and I have a slight idea of how they work, basically someone sets up a url to a wiki about a certain topic, there is information about the topic on the page, however this information does not need to be scholorally information and anyone(depending on the privacy settings) can add, alter or change the information??!!
Anyway thats my understanding of it. I think that a wiki in a school setting would be a great idea and if set up properly the students would love to interact with it. Of course the topic would have to have relvance to the unit of work and the inital set up would have to be done at school, however once set up , I think this is a great way to encourage students to research a topic and add their findings to a public space on the net such as this, where their thoughts are being shared and acknowledged by anyone. This type of ownership gives students the ability to showcase their knowledge and to further enhace and build upon others knowledge.
What an easy, free and non-time consuming tool for teachers to use to encourage their students to research and share ideas outside of school.