Google optimizes Meet for remote teachers

In a blog post published on October 8, 2020, Google introduced several new features for its Meet video conferencing service. They are primarily intended for teachers and are available through G Suite for Education, a free tool for schools looking to use physical distancing measures.

Adaptation to the pandemic

Since March, the Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted the daily life of the population and the education sector has been particularly hard hit. As a result, many teachers are forced to practice from home over the internet in order to slow the spread of the virus and this change in process is so sudden that the tools are unable to teach effectively.

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This is one of the reasons Google decided to bring new tools to teachers. In breakout rooms, for example, students can be divided into small discussion groups at the same time so that they understand the course optimally. Polling is another tool that you can use to personalize the online lesson even if there are multiple students. It offers the opportunity to ask questions using a small form at Meet. The teacher can then see who is behind it and send them files to expand their knowledge.

A question / answer feature has also been introduced, which allows students to ask a question without interrupting class. The teacher can answer them later.

Meet’s question / answer tool. © Google

School as if we were there

In addition, Google has been thinking about tools that will make the work of teachers a lot easier and integrate elements of physical school life into the virtual one. Jamboard thus enables you to prepare a board before your meeting that is only visible to the class. It can also be done in a collaborative manner so that everyone participates.

The jamboard tool that lets you call up a spreadsheet like in class. © google

A device for monitoring the attendance of students was also developed by the company Mountain View. The teachers can thus receive a report that includes the name, email address, and time each student was signed up for the course. “Later this year we will be adding administrative controls to enable or disable the attendance reporting for the domain and host controls so teachers have the option to enable / disable this feature for each meeting,” the said Explanation.

Google is adapting its tool to the challenges of the pandemic and is taking advantage of a unique opportunity: In April last year, Zoom, Meet competitor, was banned from American schools because it was accused of poorly managing its users’ data.

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