Quick Start Guide to Editing Wikpedia

Note: As with all wikis, please make sure that any content you add is original or in the public domain and does not violate copyright.

  1. Go to Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org. (You don't need to register or log in to edit Wikipedia; however, your IP address will be logged if you don't log in.)
  2. Use the Search box on the left side of the screen to find a topic that you know something about. (Suggestions include your hometown, the university you attended, a favorite hobby, a well-known person, etc.)
  3. Find something in the article that you can improve on. This may be fixing a typo, editing grammar, correcting a mistake, or adding information. To make the change:
    • You can click the "Edit this page" tab at the top of the page to edit the entire page or the "[edit]" link for an individual section to edit that section. (The latter is often easier to manage.)
    • For basic text changes, just edit the text as you like. When you are done, you can click the "Show preview" button to see your changes before you save them. When you are happy with your changes, click "Save page.


Don't worry about inadvertently messing up a page. One of the benefits of wikis is that it is very easy to revert changes. See more below.

For more advanced editing, use the toolbar at the top of the edit box:
You can mouse over each item to see what it does.

Advanced Tips
  • To link to an internal page within Wikipedia, highlight the text you want to link and click qs-wikipedia4.JPG from the toolbar. This will add double square brackets around the linked text. Paste the internal page name after the first two brackets and separate it from the text with a |. The resulting text should look like this:
    [[Clayton, Ohio | Clayton]]
  • To link to an external web site, highlight the text you want to link and click qs-wikipedia5.JPG from the toolbar. This will add square brackets around the linked text. Paste the web site after the first bracket. The resulting text should look like this:
    [http://www.englewood.oh.us/ City of Englewood]

  • To add an image to a page, you first need to upload the image to the wiki. For Wikipedia, it is suggested that you upload images to and link to them there.

  • You can view the history of edits to any page by clicking the “History” tab at the top. All the edits are listed chronologically with the most recent at the top. You can view the differences between various versions of the page by selecting the corresponding radio buttons and clicking “Compare selected versions.” A page can also be reverted to a previous version by choosing a prior version and editing and saving it.

  • If you create an account and sign in to Wikipedia, you will be given a user page. You can also create your own “sandbox.” This is a “play area” where you can try different things without interfering with an established page.

  • If you’re not sure how to achieve something, find a page that does what you are looking for and click “edit” to see their code. Then you can cancel without saving the changes.

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