Google Docs Adds Research Tool, Voice Typing, Templates: Ready For School?

3 September 2015, 9:11 am EDT By Aaron Mamiit Tech Times
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As the school year is about to kick off, Google said that it has added several new features to Google Docs to make it easier for students to finish their schoolwork.

Google announced the updates through a post on the official Google Docs blog, claiming that over the summer break, the company created tools to help students in saving time and collaborating with other students .

The first tool is the Research tool, which has been added to Docs for Android. Users can now search with Google without having to leave Docs, and then once the fact, image or quote to be used is found, a few taps will have them added to the document that the student is working on. This means that there would be less time needed consumed in switching between apps and more time on focusing on the actual schoolwork.

Google also added the voice typing feature, which will allow students to dictate the words that they want written for their work that will then be typed out for them. The feature can be accessed through the Tools menu on Docs within Google Chrome, and once the microphone icon is tapped, the tool will start typing out the words that the student dictates. The feature is available for over 40 languages.

Another feature that was added to Docs is the ability for users to see new changes to a project, which will make it easier for students to see what was changed or removed since the last time the document was accessed, and which user made the changes.

Google Docs now also has a Forms tool that will allow students to carry out surveys efficiently, with several themes and customizations available. There are several question formats supported by the tool, with the student able to insert images and videos into the survey.

Google has also added new templates for Docs, Sheets and Slides to provide students with more options in making their presentation look good and neat, so that they can focus on the content rather than on the style.

The Explore tool has also been added in Sheets, which creates insights and charts automatically on the data that is entered to give more time to users in analyzing the data.

Lastly, Google announced that it is launching the Share to Classroom extension for Google Chrome, which will simplify how teachers can share websites with the whole class to have everyone head to the same page together.

"Google's mission is to organize the world's information," said Google Apps for Education product management director Jonathan Rochelle. "That is especially true for students and teachers."

Of course, the changes will not only benefit students, as other users will certainly find ways to take advantage of the new Google Docs features.

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