In today’s digital era, technology has revolutionised the way we educate our students. As educators, we are fortunate to have access to powerful tools that can enhance our teaching and learning experiences. One such tool that has gained popularity is Google Workspace for Education Plus.
Google Workspace for Education Plus is a comprehensive platform that provides educators, students, and administrators with a range of powerful tools and services to enhance teaching, learning and administrative processes. There are four different Google Workspace for Education editions, with Plus being the most comprehensive and including all the features in Education Fundamentals, Standard, and Teaching and Learning Upgrade with additional features for certain services, such as attendance tracking in Google Meet.
Let’s look at the best practices for utilising this platform and the myriad of benefits it offers to both educators and students.
Collaborative Learning Spaces:
Workspace for Education Plus provides a range of collaborative tools that foster engagement and interaction among students and teachers. Take advantage of features such as shared documents, real-time editing and commenting, enabling seamless collaboration on projects, assignments and group activities. This platform promotes teamwork and enhances critical thinking skills, preparing students for the collaborative environments they will encounter in their future endeavours.
Best practise: You can also use the Explore tool in Docs (from the Tool dropdown menu) to research a topic on the internet or from your Drive, or find pictures without even leaving your document. It will also automatically add a citation or link for you if needed.
Streamlined Workflow Management:
Efficient organisation and seamless workflow are crucial for educators. With Workspace for Education Plus, you can create separate folders for each subject, grade level, or class, making it easy to manage and access documents, assignments and resources. The platform’s integration with other Google Workspace apps, such as Google Drive, Docs and Calendar, streamlines your workflow, saving valuable time and effort.
Best practise: Create audiences for internal file sharing. By creating a targeting audience you ensure files are shared with the right people, and sensitive data is kept secure. You can also set rules to control who can access Google Drive files, helping ensure the privacy of your data.
Personalised Learning Experiences:
Every student is unique, and individualised attention plays a crucial role in their academic success. Workspace for Education Plus allows you to create personalised learning experiences by tailoring assignments, feedback and resources to meet each student’s needs. Utilise the platform’s features, like differentiated instruction and assignment settings, to accommodate diverse learning styles and abilities, empowering every student to thrive.
Best practise: Google Workspace for Education has various features to make it more accessible for people with learning disabilities. It has high contrast mode in Docs, Sheets and Slides, voice to text, and you can add alt-text to your images in Gmail making them accessible for people using screen readers and helping them better understand exactly what is being shared.
Enhanced Communication and Feedback:
Clear and effective communication is vital in any educational setting. Workspace for Education Plus offers various communication channels, such as Gmail, Google Meet, and Classroom comments, enabling seamless interactions between students and teachers. Use these features to provide timely feedback, answer questions, and address concerns promptly.
Best practise: Communication platforms like Google Meet facilitate virtual classroom sessions, ensuring effective remote learning experiences. You can also arrange for breakout rooms within Google Meet so that your class can break away into smaller groups to work on assignments or discussion points. You can control the number of rooms, set a timer so that the students return back to the main meeting after a set time, decide on each room’s participants or shuffle the participants to make it random.
Insights and Analytics:
To track student progress and make data-driven decisions, Workspace for Education Plus provides powerful analytics and insights. Monitor student engagement, identify areas that require additional support, and measure overall class performance. Utilise this data to tailor your instructional strategies and offer targeted interventions, ensuring that every student reaches their full potential.
Best practise: Educators can also take advantage of unlimited originality reports and identify potential plagiarism in assignments by checking student work against a private, domain-owned repository of past work.
Safe and Secure Learning Environment:
Workspace for Education Plus prioritises the privacy and security of both educators and students (See our previous blog post: How Google Workspace for Education Plus Enhances Security and Privacy.) Benefit from robust security features such as data loss prevention, advanced mobile device management, and enhanced reporting tools. Google’s commitment to safeguarding user data ensures a safe learning environment, giving peace of mind to administrators, teachers and parents.
The security dashboard gives you an overview of your various security reports from today, yesterday, this week, last week, this month, last month, or days ago (up to 180 days). You can customise it to suit your needs. You can view external file sharing, control excessive and unnecessary emails to protect against spam, phishing and malware, and control the access of third party applications.
Best practise: Set up your Gmail Security Sandbox to protect your system and organisations data from malicious emails and software. The Security Sandbox can scan email attachments to manage suspicious files and adhere to your organisation’s compliance rules.
Workspace for Education Plus serves as an invaluable tool for educators, offering a comprehensive range of features and benefits. By leveraging its wide range of features you can transform your classroom into an engaging and effective learning space.
If you would like to embrace the power of technology and the flexibility of Workspace for Education Plus to foster innovation, creativity, and academic success for your students, chat with the team at Radical Cloud Solutions. We are a proud Google partner and excited to help you explore its features, and see how it can meet the evolving needs of your learners.