Google Classroom App Review20,678
Google appeared as a research project at Stanford University. That’s why Google founders still keep that almost religious feeling towards education. Free Google Classroom service is a special adaptation of Google Apps (well, now G Suite is the name, but it sounds like some Compton rap gang, so the fingers type the old name unwillingly) meant for education. The cloud services become integrated into a new construction suitable for educational purposes.
The sine qua non condition is your school or university being registered in the system. It’s not so hard for today’s school to get connected to the system.
But there's one thing you need to know. Google Classroom is a project that requires both server and client parts. So you can only use the app’s potential if your school or other organization is using G Suite for Education as a service. Then (if your login is approved by administrator) you can connect to it with your credentials. Otherwise the service will just decline your credential, telling you that your account is not a Google Classroom one, and you only wonder why you decided to download Google Classroom.
Well, if you get connected, the functionality depends on who you are: a school headmaster or a dean, a teacher or a student, or a pupil’s parent. The app provides some access grades: the higher is the level, the wider and deeper is access.
A teacher at his/her side can create new classes, add and remove students, publish materials for their group access, conduct audio and video lectures. There may be an undefined access lecture that can be attended with anyone who has an invitation code. If you have this code, well, you’re in, and all you need to do is download Google Classroom APK and join the class.
It takes seconds to create an assignment and add a brief description to it, maybe, add some links to materials the students will need. Though the form is limited, in fact, it can contain many attachments and unlimited text in Description field, while even one link may be enough.
Media materials and documents are easily embedded into assignments. These may be files from Google Drive, YouTube videos, or external links. One of the most attractive features for a teacher is creating copies of the original document for each student. It eases its checking for a teacher; on the student’s side, all it takes is a click on a link and a piece of work in Google Docs.
There are also timetable and reminder features, notifications for the teacher when students turn in their works, view stats. Just like this, when a teacher checks and grades a student’s work, a student gets notified of that. A student can view not only a grade, but also teacher’s comment (if the teacher has left any).
Last but not least, there is also a horizontal student-to-student communication. Students don’t have to exchange their really private data to interact within their learning process.
Well, online education has never looked so attractive. The XX century children could only have dreamed of having all their homework to do in a portable notepad-sized device, let alone their mates list, instructions on how to do the work, inquiry materials accessible and so on. And now it’s all organized in one app with traditional material design you have already got used to with other mobile Google apps.
Though Google Classroom app is a standalone one, in fact it’s based on already existing Google cloud services. Anyway, one doesn’t have to know that to make use of it. The hierarchic structure of folders based on Google Drive is represented as clear and logical classroom.
But all the services used in classroom activity are left behind a special shell addressing them directly. This visual shell unites all these activities in easily recognizable Google style.
The frontend app is available in most popular languages, and that is hard to overrate for an educational service.
When it comes to learning, usability is a major priority. And Google developers have done their best to make the app easy and clear for anyone, no matter who uses it: a student, a teacher or a headmaster. The app integrates all the features it needs from other Google services.
Just imagine what hell of a work it would be to handle all the students’ works manually within Google Drive file manager, and you’ll realize the progress this app brings.
Cross-platform use 9/10
For now, we can use Google Classroom for Android and iOS. But other platform users can use free web access with its full features. In fact, your platform doesn’t matter. Even if you’re a die-hard Windows Phone or BlackBerry fan, web access is still there.
None. We have told that Google doesn’t require any payment from educational organizations. It’s not that “education must be free” (anyway you have to pay for your devices and Internet access, for the start). But it’s certainly easier to learn with such an assistant saving your efforts and providing more time left for other purposes.
Not only is Google paying its moral debts to educational sphere. Google understands that education should be a bit more fun for students and a bit less dull for teachers. The app serves all of these purposes. There’s even more: Google-based online classes are ready for transferring, localizing or scaling as classes, with no need to reinvent them. Teachers can as well exchange experience within Google network, students’ feedback gets more informative, and the headmasters have another tool to check their work.
Google has made both teachers’ and students’ life easier, with constant connection, easy homework and check tools, integrated with Google cloud services, so if your or your kids’ school or university is not connected, what are you waiting for?
Pros : Easy for all teaching process participants;
Available in many languages;
Suitable for online classes.
Cons : Requires G Suite for Education account;
Registering your school in Google requires administrator rights in your school domain; well, that's not a student's problem.
Cross-platform use 4.5