Welcome back everybody! This week we will talk about another useful website for teaching: Google Drive. In fact, Google Drive is a file storage launched in 2012 by Google. On this website, users can drop documents, share files, edit documents and many other options. The purpose of this article is to demonstrate the advantages of using Google Drive in a classroom but also to identify the weaknesses of this service.
First of all, Google Drive is free. All you need is an Internet connection. Creating an account is really simple. You only have to enter your email address and then you can start working on your documents. Like a Microsoft word document, you can write texts and change many features such as the writing color, the size of the writing and the writing style. Like I said previously, you can share your documents with people. For example, a teacher could create an assignment and share it with all members of his classroom. But the advantage of sharing has a lot more to offer than that. When you share your document, you can also go in the settings and allow people to modify your shared file. For instance, as a university student, I have a lot of team projects to do and I often use Google Drive. When I have a text to write with a colleague, we put it on Google Drive so that we can work at the same time on the document and see the modifications instantely. It would be really useful to use this tool in a secondary classroom because it could help students to work in teams and it could help them getting organized. Lauren Acton created a document for the Senior Teaching Assistant program at university York about the different advantages of using Google Drive. In this document, she mentions that with this website, teachers can keep track of the modifications made by the students. Also, with Google Drive, users can post files which are too big for moodle or email. Starr Sackstein wrote an interesting article for a website called Education Week Teacher. The title of this article is “Why schools need Google Drive”. The author reports several important points related to teaching. He says that students need “appropriate feedback directly on the computer”. In Google Drive, when a file is shared, people can highlight parts of the text and write comments about it. This is useful for the teacher because he can directly give feedback to students and learners can immediately see the modifications.
On the other hand, Google Drive has some weaknesses. David Frankk cites the most major one: “In case of a scenario where the Internet isn’t functioning, access to your data in such situation becomes impossible. » Also, Google Drive has some security issues.
To conclude, even if Google Drive has some weaknesses, it is a useful tool for teaching and learning because it allows students to work collaboratively with their peers and teachers in a dynamic and creative atmosphere. Moreover, according to the website PC Advisor, Google Drive is one of the seven best cloud storage services.