Google redoubles its commitment to education: up to 100 TB for schools, Classroom with extensions and an assistant for when the teacher is not there
Google has held its event ‘Learning with Google‘and take the opportunity to bring us more than 50 news for your education ecosystemFrom the Google Classroom tool to Google Meet to changes in G Suite for Education.
As in teleworking, the pandemic has revolutionized education and remote solutions have gained much more force. From Google they know it and therefore they have wanted to take advantage of this event to show their work, inaugurated by Sundar Pichai himself, CEO of Google.
Extensions and new features for the Google ecosystem in education
The first changes come for G Suite for Education and Google Workspace for Education. Google explains that more than 170 million students and educators use Google Workspace for Education. For them, Google will create three new subscription levels: Standard, Advanced and Plus, with up to 100 TB of space for colleges and universities. A huge amount that Google understands will be enough to supply all storage needs.
Regarding its Google Classroom application, the company explains that they have 150 million users, 40 million more than last year. In this case, during this 2021 Classroom will be updated with different improvements. The first one is the arrival of third-party extensions, which will include options like Kahoot! or Adobe.
In addition to the extensions, at the end of the year Classroom will allow to obtain better statistics of the students, being able to easily check which are the most active students or what have been the last contributions from each of them.
Additionally, and thinking of those students with difficulty accessing a good connection, Classroom will allow download content, to work offline. This option will be available at the end of the year and on Android.
Classroom will also incorporate options such as an improvement in the creation of photos, being able to attach homework pictures and edit them directly from the phone.
The next application to be updated is Google Meet. According to Google data, the equivalent of 1,300 years of learning are made through its video calling application every day. In this case, news will arrive for teachers in the form of co-moderators. This will allow teachers to designate another person to help control the room.
One of the additions that will soon arrive will be to end the call for everyone. It is a tool for prevent students from chatting on video call once the teacher leaves this. Equivalently, there are also new options to silence students individually or globally.
Google explains that Meet for Chromebooks will improve their performance and also the ’emoji reactions’ come to Google Meet. This is an option available in other tools such as Skype, which will now also be on Meet.
Chrome OS enhancements and an educational assistant for homework
According IDC data, Chromebooks have overtaken Macbooks for the first time in 2020. Google announces that During the first quarter of 2021, 40 new devices will arrive with Chrome OS for education, many of them with LTE connectivity.
Regarding Chromebooks, Google announces 500 new policies for the Administration Console, which will help improve the experience and accessibility with these devices. Among the new options, Chrome OS will also allow to record the screen directly, so that teachers and students can share in real time what appears on their devices.
Without revealing many details, Google explains they are working on an educational assistant. It would be a modification of the Google assistant, where instead of giving links or videos as a result, it would give an explanation. The idea would be to help students when the teacher is not available.
Equivalent to when we ask “2 + 2” in Google and it gives us the answer, this educational assistant would return an explanatory answer, giving importance to the steps and not just the answer. At the moment, more details about this project are unknown.
Here there are several possibilities; whether it is a voice version of the Wolfram Alpha-style responses that Google already provides, or it is a specific tool for the occasion, which tries provide natural language answers to some typical student questions and problems. Predictably it will be the incorporation into its education ecosystem of Socratic, the artificial intelligence tool that Google bought in 2019.
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