I want to pass on a few “tips and tricks” I’ve read recently for using Google docs.

The first comes from Jarod Bormann: How to force “make a copy” when sharing a Google doc.  Jarod wrote “Sharing a doc link and asking a group to Make a Copy inevitably would lead to mass confusion. Most would be able to follow File > Make a Copy without any problems. But there are the handful that begin making changes on my original and therefore making changes for everyone else. In a group of 25 or larger, this can be a time killer.”  He describes how to force the share-ees to make a copy of the doc:

  1. Locate the URL of your Google Doc.
  2. Change the last word in the URL from EDIT to COPY.
  3. Hit enter, and…voila!

Now you can take that URL and share it with whomever, and they will have no choice but to Make a Copy.

My second tip comes from Paula DuPont, who wrote about how to tag individuals in comments. “If you want to make sure you get someone’s attention, tag them in your comment. It’s simple: type an @ or + sign, then start typing the name of one of your co-workers. Google Docs will show you options based on your Gmail contacts, and notify the person you mentioned via email. If the person you mentioned doesn’t have access to the doc, you’ll be asked to choose permission levels for the user.”

Year 9 Renaissance personality research paper Google Docs

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Speaking of comments, would you like to literally speak your comments in a doc?  Cloud Fender recommend using the add-on Kaizena. “Highlight and speak instead of typing. Kaizena Mini brings the full power of Kaizena feedback right into the Google Docs Editor and is 100% compatible with Google Classroom.”  (Mixed comments have been left about this add-on.  Be sure to read them, and then test it before investing hours of time and energy.)

The last tip for this post is from The Gooru on “How to Create the Perfect Syllabus in Google Docs“.  “By adding a table of contents, page numbers and headers to your online syllabi, you can create a dynamic and easy to use standard for both teachers and students. Since it is hosted on Drive, rather than printed on paper, a syllabus can be changed or updated at any time to keep up with a constantly evolving schedule.” Watch the video below to learn how to add the table of contents, page numbers and use formatting styles.