Monday, July 1, 2019

Seven Google Product Updates Made in June for Teachers to Note

Every month Google rolls-out updates to many of the products that are used by teachers and students. June was a particularly busy month as Google announced new product features leading into and during ISTE's annual trade show conference. Here are the updates that you may want to note from the last month.

Gmail Confidential Mode
This was announced in May, but went into effect last week. Confidential mode is now available for all Gmail/ G Suite users (check with your domain administrator if you don't see it in your G Suite account). Watch my video below to learn how confidential mode works.


Rubrics in Google Classroom
Just before the ISTE conference Google announced a beta test for a rubric creation feature in Google Classroom. The rubric creation feature seems fairly limited at this point. If you want to try it, you can apply to the beta program here.

Sync Google Classroom to Infinite Campus and Capita SIMS
This is another beta program that you can apply to join. It should make it easier to move grades from Google Classroom gradebooks to full-fledged student information systems.

Google Expeditions on Chromebooks
During the ISTE conference Google announced that Google Expeditions will now be available to use on some Chromebooks and Chrome OS tablets. The list of supported devices is short, but should be expanding in time for back-to-school season.

New Google Slides Features
You can now resize the speaker notes and slide thumbnails in presentation mode. A couple of keyboard shortcuts were added too.

Edit History for Google Sheets Cells
In addition to viewing the version history for an entire sheet in Google Sheets, you can now view the edit history for a single cell in a sheet. Right-click on a cell to access its edit history.

Google Photos Will Stop Syncing With Drive
Starting in July Google Photos will no longer automatically sync with Google Drive. You will still be able to manually move images from Google Photos to Drive, but it won't happen automatically. Learn more about this change here.