Ahead of next week’s ISTE 2019, Google for Education announced a slew of G Suite updates for schools. Classroom is adding grading rubrics and SIS syncing, while locked mode Quizzes on Chromebooks are launching this August.
Google Forms: Quizzes, Material Theme, and importing
Quizzes in Google Forms are a popular way to conduct tests. On managed Chromebooks, “locked mode” prevents students from searching the web for answers or looking at cheatsheets during an assessment. Until submitted, devices will be restricted to the exam tab.
Just in time for the fall semester, locked mode Quizzes will enter general availability this August for all G Suite for Education users on managed Chrome OS devices.
Meanwhile, a Google Material Theme revamp for Forms was teased by Google for Education at ISTE 2019, with the “fresh new design” matching refreshes for Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides. There will be more space at the top of Forms, and “better ways to design the look and feel” of custom headers.
Teachers will additionally gain the ability to import questions they’ve previously used into new Forms.
Classroom: Gradebook GA, rubrics, SIS syncing
Teachers can enter assignment scores and test results with Gradebook in Classroom. In the coming days, it will become generally available for all users.
Teachers will also be able to customize how grades are calculated in their classes (weighted average or total points-based), set up grade categories for assignments, and share an overall grade with students through a host of new class settings.
Meanwhile, educators will soon be able to create and grade rubrics through Classroom and Course Kit. These grading guidelines can be attached to assignments and made visible to students.
Google is also testing the ability to sync grades from existing school information systems (SIS) into Classroom. The early access beta this summer will support Infinite Campus and Capita SIMS, with more integrations coming.
Once enabled by an admin, educators can visit gradebook to sync grades to their SIS, eliminating the need to enter grades in two different locations. Aside from helping educators avoid data errors, this beta program will allow educators to spend more time providing quality instruction, through more regular feedback to students about their grades—all without leaving Google Classroom.
Chromebook App Hub
Google is now curating the best classroom applications and ideas for Chrome OS devices. The Chromebook App Hub is available today and aimed at reducing the time teachers spend researching apps. They can also share ideas and lesson plans with other educators.
School IT administrators benefit from app listings that specify data and accessibility policies, while developers can directly explain the benefits for their apps. At launch on Wednesday, 75 apps are available with more added quarterly.
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