What are some of the importance of Google Chromebooks the education? Long before the sweeping influence of the pandemic reshaped the educational landscape, Google Chromebooks had already etched their mark as the preferred device for e-learning in US school systems. In the year 2017, these devices accounted for a staggering 60% of all education shipments.
Since 2016, the majority of device acquisitions for K-12 classrooms have centered around Chromebooks. A testament to their efficacy, Google Workspace for Education, their educational platform, now garners a user base exceeding 170 million educators and students globally.
Importance of Google Chromebooks the Education
Beyond their user-friendly design, Chromebooks unveil a plethora of advantages that cater to educators, school administrators, and students alike.
This article delves into the five paramount advantages of Google Chromebooks for educators and students.
1. Seamless Integration with Google Ecosystem
Chromebooks operate on Chrome OS, an operating system meticulously designed to harmonize with Google applications and services. A staggering 170 million educators and students are already ensconced within the realm of these services, including the likes of Google Classroom and Google Workspace for Education.
Given the compatibility of Chromebooks with Google Workspace for Education, educational institutions gain access to a treasure trove encompassing Google Calendar, Drive, Meet, Docs, and Slides.
This suite of cloud-based applications offers a spectrum of options ranging from free toolkits to enhanced capabilities within paid editions.
Chromebooks are ingeniously tailored to collaborate with Google Classroom, an educational tool nestled within Google Workspace for Education. This platform facilitates learning, collaboration, and communication, proving a cornerstone within the K-12 schooling sector.
Google Classroom, boasting over 150 million student, teacher, and administrator users, stands as one of the foremost learning management platforms.
By weaving applications, student work, and personalized settings into the fabric of cloud storage rather than device-based repositories, Chromebooks seamlessly transition between users. The shared nature of Chromebooks ensures that students and educators can access their pertinent data and preferences by simply logging into their Google accounts.
2. A Seamless Transition to Remote Learning
Amid the tumultuous throes of the COVID-19 pandemic, nearly 93% of households with school-aged children delved into the realm of remote learning. This transformative phase called for new features, including the ability to record class sessions.
Chromebook updates unveiled an integrated screen recording tool right within the Chrome OS. This functionality empowers both teachers and students to capture lessons and assignments, be it from the comfort of their homes or within the school premises.
The native screen recording tool simplifies the process of recording and referring to virtual lessons. Activating the tool from the Quick Settings panel, users can customize their recording preferences and audio settings.
A countdown timer sets the stage before recording commences, while a conspicuous red circle adorns the bottom taskbar, signifying ongoing recording. With a click of the red button, recording halts, enabling users to view, share, and archive the video file.
Furthermore, the era of remote learning underscored the importance of offline device utility and support. A multitude of schools make use of Google Classroom and Google Workspace for Education, seamlessly integrated into Chromebooks.
The synergy of Google Classroom and Workspace facilitates offline access for users. This feature extends to students bereft of internet connectivity, allowing them to work on Google Docs, Google Sheets, and files stored in Google Drive.
Chromebook supplements these capabilities with extensions such as Screencastify, facilitating offline classwork.
Educators seeking additional offline applications can explore the Chromebook App Hub or the Chrome Web Store, utilizing the “runs offline” filter.
3. Fortified Security Measures Integrated
The year 2020 witnessed an onslaught of ransomware attacks targeting nearly half of all educational institutions worldwide. These malevolent assaults jeopardized crucial data and threw both in-person and virtual learning into disarray. Schools and universities found themselves shelling out hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars in ransom payments.
A primary wellspring of cybercrime lies in the vulnerabilities of devices. In the bid to shield data and applications from viruses and malware, Chromebook devices automatically deploy security updates and patches, rendering user intervention unnecessary.
This shift relinquishes many IT-related responsibilities from the hands of school districts, effectively curtailing the learning time lost to technological snags originating from malware and viruses. Run Windows on any Mac—Intel or Apple silicon—and experience a seamless integration between operating systems.
Even amidst the expanse of devices spanning physical schools and remote learning setups, Chromebooks seamlessly fit into the management frameworks of school districts and IT teams. Chromebook boasts a web-based Google Admin console, a control hub enabling IT teams to configure a myriad of device settings. From connectivity preferences to content filtering and preinstalled applications, this console offers a comprehensive suite of management tools.
The cloud-based storage feature of Chromebooks automatically saves students’ work onto Google Drive. Beyond alleviating the cost burdens of external storage devices such as USB sticks, this auto-cloud storage functionality ensures that no work goes amiss.
Safeguarding both devices and data, Chromebooks employ the principle of sandboxing. This organizational methodology entails isolating and executing each browser, web application, or internal application within its dedicated “sandbox.” Such isolation staunches the dissemination of viruses to other system components.
Further bolstering the fortifications, Chromebooks incorporate Verified Boot, a system integrity check activated every time the device powers up. If system tampering or corruption is detected during this self-check, the Chromebook autonomously initiates repairs, necessitating no user intervention.
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4. Amplified Efficiency and Productivity
Within the classroom setting, time is of the essence. Any disruption to classroom proceedings has a ripple effect impacting both students and educators, chipping away at precious learning time.
Technological disruptions often manifest as prolonged device start-up periods, drained batteries, severed network connectivity, and more.
Chromebooks emerge as swift contenders in this regard. Their speedy boot-up process ushers them into readiness within a mere 10 seconds. Even in the event of a device reboot, Chromebooks outshine non-Chrome OS devices, accomplishing the task approximately 73% faster.
Bolstering this efficiency is the extensive battery life that Chromebooks proffer. With an average runtime of up to 12 hours, Chromebooks insulate instructional continuity from the scramble for a nearby power outlet. Furthermore, Chromebooks’ ability to function offline renders them immune to productivity setbacks stemming from Wi-Fi disruptions.
Should connectivity issues arise, students and educators can continue to view, create, and edit Google Sheets, Docs, and Slides. The ability to access and compose Gmail messages ensures that productivity remains unscathed, with pending messages dispatched once the Chromebook is back online.
5. Customization to Cater to Diverse Student Needs
Chromebooks geared toward education come equipped with built-in accessibility features, tailored to accommodate a diverse range of learners. These inclusive attributes, settings, apps, and extensions are strategically designed to serve the educational needs of all students. Notable examples encompass:
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– High contrast themes, magnification capabilities, and highlights tailored to visually impaired users.
– Audio customization options and captions to facilitate engagement for those who are deaf or hard of hearing.
– Spoken feedback tools, a boon for individuals with dyslexia or visual impairments.
– Customizable keyboard settings, sticky keys, and dictation features catering to users with motor disabilities and dexterity impairments.
– The ChromeVox screen reader, a boon for those with visual impairments, enabling them to navigate Chrome OS. The platform also extends compatibility with braille devices, catering to users who are blind or possess significant visual challenges.
Chromebook keyboards boast a unique design feature: lowercase letters grace the alphabetic keys instead of the traditional uppercase. This design decision bridges the gap for students, enabling them to align the visual representation on their screens with the corresponding key they press. Such an approach proves especially helpful for younger students, aiding in their journey of learning to read and type.
Augmenting Chromebooks with Parallels Desktop for Chrome OS
Despite their myriad merits, Chromebooks rely on Chrome OS, an ecosystem incompatible with Windows applications. This leaves a void for users seeking access to robust productivity applications such as Microsoft Word and Excel.
Step in Parallels® Desktop for Chrome OS, a transformative solution that bridges this gap. Enabling students, educators, and administrators to access full-featured Windows applications, both online and offline, Parallels Desktop redefines possibilities.
Upon installation on a Chrome OS device, Parallels Desktop allows for the seamless operation of Windows OS and software as if they were locally installed. The coexistence of Windows and Chrome OS facilitates effortless file and folder sharing across the two operating systems.
By marrying the efficiency of Chromebooks with the prowess of Windows and its applications, Parallels Desktop for Chrome OS has garnered recognition as one of the top three tech innovations of 2020.
The journey of Chromebooks within the educational sphere is nothing short of transformative, empowering both educators and students in their quest for knowledge.