Google's Course Kit injects Docs and Drive into educator software

Teachers can edit and give feedback just like they would with Google Docs.

Back in March, Apple held an entire education-focused event to introduce new tools like Schoolwork, which helps educators collaborate and keep track of student assignments through networks of iPads. Google isn't far behind: Its new Course Kit lets instructors use Google Docs and Drive collect student work, give feedback and share class materials, and it's available in 44 languages. And, of course, students won't have to use proprietary tablets to benefit.

Course Kit is built with the Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) standard so it can interact with learning management systems (LMS), which educators use to deliver materials and monitor coursework. In essence, this should let teachers and students use Google Docs seamlessly with their existing software setup. The former can leave comments on assignments exactly as they would a Google Document, and even suggests commonly-used notes so they can drop the ol' "Citation needed" quickly to save time for more nuanced feedback elsewhere.

There are other ways Course Kit syncs with an educator's LMS, like automatically archiving grades and feedback when files are returned to students. They can also embed files and course materials into LMS pages. Institutions that use G Suite for Education can request access to the Course Kit beta here.