Sharing What I Find

Instructional Design and Technology in Education

Google Apps for Education April and May 2016

New things from Google Apps for Education that are helpful or fun!

Google Sheets

You can now resize the formula bar so that you see complicated formulas or data that you’ve entered in a specific cell and see what you’re doing! If you use this area to add one of the  function capabilities available in Google Sheets, you may have found it hard to troubleshoot  your formula when it isn’t working because of the size restrictions of the formula bar.

spreadsheet-formula bar expand (1)

So extend the viewing area!

Update a  Chart or Graph automatically from within Docs or Slides with the new Update button. If you have inserted a chart or graph into a Doc or Slide, you can now automatically update that visual right inside the document.

Embedded Charts

Google Slides

There is a new feature added to the presentation side of Google Slides, which accepts questions from the audience  through a short URL. The questions appear on the presenter side and the presenter can decide it he or she wants to show these questions to the audience and when to address the questions.

From the  presenter side, when you get ready to present your Slides, you have the option to present with Q and A.

Slides - qanda option

When you make this selection, in addition to your presentation window, a separate window will appear. From here you can see your slides, the slide (speaker) notes and a  new tab called “Audience Tools” which is basically all the questions that have been asked. (I know, it would be more convenient if these weren’t on separate tabs. A bit of a cognitive overload when also trying to present.)

Be sure to pay attention to accepting  questions – your choices are “anyone at your organization” (in our case, the @alaska domain) or “anyone.”

slides-presenter side

Viewer can vote up or vote down questions to help filter those that are most important or intereting. Check out this video for how this feature was used.

Google Calendar

Have you noticed anything new in the event information in your  Google Calendar? The  location for your event may now  appear in the description when  you are in the day or week view mode, as long as there is room. Now you may be able to see where you’re supposed to be without clicking into the details.

Google Calendar room shows in view

And here is another Calendar update…if you have set your options to be notified of upcoming events, you may have been annoyed that the notification actually interrupted you while working in a different browser tab. The calendar notification comes  to the surface and you had to click it away to continue your work. You can now elect to have event notifications  sent as browser notifications instead of those interrupting alerts.

From the Calendar settings look for the notifications options.

calendar notifications

When you make your selection, you’ll get a confirmation.

calendar notifications confirmation

And you won’t get interrupted again!

Google Apps

Google recently purchased Synergyse who is a leader in providing training videos right inside of Google Apps. Synergyse was a paid service and now, with the new acquition, you can add this service for free. This is a chrome extension so you need to be using chrome with your Google Applications in order to use it. View quick 2-min-or-less videos to help understand application functionality right when and where you need it.    For more information.

From within any of the applications, look for this icon:

Screen Shot 2016-05-04 at 11.30.22 AM



Author: Heidi Olson

Heidi enjoys working with content experts in developing eCampus courses to provide alternatives for students. Her other interests include faculty training in best practices for eCampus and researching eCampus tools to help fulfill learning outcomes. Having worked in the distance education arena for over 20 years, she has a wide range of experiences in supporting students and faculty as technology and pedagogy evolve.

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