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Google Apps

Google Apps are supported by UK and thus more easily integrated into online, hybrid, and face-to-face classroom environments. Students and faculty can activate their uky gmail account, which gives access to the collection of Google tools, including Google Drive, Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Slides. What makes these apps particularly useful in the classroom is that the allow for collaborative work, stored in a cloud-based environment, with various levels of access.

What does this mean, in particular? It means that students can compose in a Google Doc collaboratively, tracking changes, making margin comments, while the instructor can track changes according to who made what change and when. This kind of activity can also be done in Google Slides, in order to make presentation slides collaboratively, and collaborative spreadsheets in Google Sheets. You can also create a form in Google Forms that populate a Google sheet, allowing for a productive way to gather information or do formative assessment.
Because all of the files are cloud-based, they can be accessed from any computer or smartphone with internet access, and can integrate audio, video, and other visual elements.

Google has a full YouTube channel with suggested uses and assignments for the classroom and beyond. Some preliminary ideas on how Google Apps:

  • Sharing materials
  • Peer-Review
  • Assignment submission
  • Collaborative note-taking
  • Collaborative writing/projects
  • Collective annotated bibliographies
  • Multimedia resources

The Google Apps can also be used in the classroom in active learning exercises, asking students to synthesize and create collective artifacts that reflect and apply their learning. The artifacts are also shareable and visible, allowing for students to learn from each other while also allowing for accountability both from each other and from the instructor. Faculty Focus recently highlighted the potential of Google Apps to improve student engagement using some of these approaches and techniques.

We at CELT offer a number of workshops on Google Apps and can help you identify which apps could be right for your class, as well as what kinds of assignments can be done. Please contact CELT with any questions about Google Apps.