How do I share Google Docs with students?

Google Office Suite allows you to share your files with others in real-time. Whenever you share a file from your Google Drive or directly in your app, you can let others view and even edit that same file. While you can share any file stored on your Google Drive, it's important to note that you can only use the collaboration features for files created within your Drive.

  • Google Docs: create and edit your document from anywhere on the Net. Amazing sharing/collaborating capability. Offers simultaneous editing. No need to ever “save”, in fact, they don’t even have a SAVE button. Not too much focus was put on formatting so if you need to adhere to APA or some type of formatting standard, work in Google Docs for portability but finish in MS Word.
  • Google Forms: whip out those forms, surveys, questionnaires, or even pop up quizzes in no time. So easy to use YET very powerful. There are many add-on options to help with the form tool.
  • Google Slides: Create great looking presentation directly on your browser, in the cloud, from anywhere. You can safely leave that USB drive in your drawer when leaving for a conference.  And of course, it has the same powerful sharing capability.  
  • Google Sheets: create and share your spreadsheet without downloading any software. Nice chart and graph feature.
  • Google Sites: How do I say “Love” in the Google language? Just create a site for it. You can whip up one or ten websites in a flash. Very useful for students to create an area for their projects.

To share your document with others you will need to know: 1. Who to share it with 2. What kind of access they will have.

1. Since your students are in the public domain you will need to either share the document with a specific group of people by entering individual email addresses or share via a specific link.  2. For Collaboration, they will need to have Edit access.

1. Create a Google Doc and save it by clicking on the file name and type in a name for your document.

The name of the google doc is highlighted

2. When you are ready to share, click the blue Share button.

Share button selected

You will get a popup window with several options:

Option 1: Share this document with specific individual(s) via email invite.

1. Click on the email field and start typing in the email address.

Note: Separate each additional email with a space. In this example, the person's email displays because it is already in the user's contacts list.

email address selected for share

2. Customize a message on the invitation email if desired.

Editor link selected

3. Click the drop down menu on the right to change access level.

Viewer: can only view the document,

Commenter: can leave comment on the page via the comment feature.

Editor: can edit the document.

Viewer is selected

4.  Click Send to send the email.

Send button selected

You have now learned how to share a google document. The same share options apply to all other google apps (Sheets, Slides, Forms).

Article Summary

You have now learned how to share a Google Doc with your students.