4 New Google Docs Features Teachers and Educators Should Know about

Share this post:  
Over the last few days Google Docs announced the release (and the expected release) of a number of key features that will be of tremendous help for us in education. These new features are part of a collection of new updates touching almost all of Google Workspace services including Sheets, Forms, Slides, Meet, and Google Classroom. Apparently, Google seems keen on creating an integrated and interactive work experience across all of its service so that users can easily navigate and pull in content from one service right into the other with few clicks. I will be highlighting all of the new features that concern us in education in a series of posts starting with Google Docs today.

The main new features in Google Docs are:

1- Smart chips
I have already covered smart chips in a previous post here in EdTech and mLearning. Smart chips allows you to pull in information from other workspace products into your document. Using the symbol @ you can add things such as files, dates, and people. "For example, if you’re a student working on a group project, you can quickly embed files from Drive or tag other students in your group right into your document by typing the ‘@’ sign. Once people are tagged, just hover over their name to quickly chat, email or set up a meeting."

Source: Google Blog

2- Interactive checklists
Similar to bulleted lists, interactive checklists allows you to organize items into ordered structure with the added functionality that users are able to mark completed items. Table templates is another new feature that is expected to be released in the next few months. The purpose behind table templates is to help users enhance their collaboration and foster their workflow. "For example, topic-voting templates let you easily gather feedback directly in docs." 

Source: Google Blog

3- New writing tips
Docs is adding more and more awesome stylistic features to its editor. Besides suggestions about grammatical errors that has been around for a year now, Docs users can now turn on/off the new feature that provides "warnings about offensive language and stylistic suggestions".

Source: Google Blog

4- Present to Google Meet directly from Docs
Users of Sheets, Slides and Docs are  now able to directly present their content to Google Meet. "You can quickly present and see both participants and your content in the Meet tab. Later this year we’ll take this a step further and allow Education Plus customers to embed live Meet video calls in Docs, Sheets and Slides, making it even easier to see each other while collaborating."

Source: Google Blog