Correcting & Commenting on Student Work Just Got Easier in Google Docs

One of the issues for teacher with electronic writing from students is that we are not used to grading and giving feedback digitally.  This should surprise no one.  Exceedingly few of us that are currently classroom teachers have any models for electronic feedback on writing.  I take classes at the local community college for fun and enrichment and I have a few models, but they are based on specialised products.

With Google Docs, as awesome as the collaboration tools have been, grading, especially the more technical parts of writing (grammar, syntax, usage, punctuation, etc.) have been a  little cumbersome.  Mainly what you have is the commenting system, which can get unwieldy for secondary teachers with over 150 essays to grade at a time.  I have seen some teachers use the highlighting tool and then color code errors and that's an inventive solution, but Google has added a feature to Docs, that is going to make all of our grading-lives easier.  It also has potential to make student more accountable for peer editing responsibilities.

This features is called suggestions and it is perfect for showing student the correction they need to make to the more technical side of their writing.  And one of my favorite things about this feature, you can use it whether you have editing rights or comment-only rights.

Check out the screencast below.