Introduction to Google+

Google+ is a social networking service developed and maintained by Google themselves. Google+ hit the market in 2011 and since then has grown into the second largest social media platform world wide. Facebook is still the king of social media at around 701 million active users, but Google+ has been quickly gaining with an approximate 360 million users.

Google has many features which include:

  • Creating a profile page
  • Creating “Circles” of friends (categories of those that you follow)
  • Communities ( a place where people of similar interests can share)
  • Photo upload and sharing
  • Hangouts (text, voice and video calling between those on Google+)
  • Events (planning and inviting)
  • Local (Reviews of local attractions)
  • Mobile app (available on iOS and Android and allows the use of all the above features)

Google+, as a tool, is being used more and more in many different domains including business, photography and most importantly Education. The following slideshow shares a few of the ways in which Google+ can be used in the classroom and between educators around the world.

64 comments on “Introduction to Google+
  1. I have recently started using Google+ for aggregating links to items that play into my ETEC work. I was using Twitter for about a year, but I got tired of all of the bots and spam. I’m still learning the ins and outs of Google+ features and I am wondering if one reason why the numbers of users look so impressive is that the service is linked to the popular gMail client. I do find that the majority of websites that have a Facebook and Twitter button for quick sharing do not have the Google+ button.

    A quick aside, I like the integrated slideshow hosted on Google Drive, I didn’t realize that was possible!

  2. troymoore says:

    Not to mirror what Nicola said above me, but I had no idea drive hosted slideshows in that manner. Thanks so much.

    • jetz66 says:

      It is a great feature. In fact you can publish any Google Doc to the web by going to File (in the menu), then clicking on “Publish to Web.” It is a great new feature that I think is another hidden gem with Google.

  3. jkhanson says:

    Despite being a member, I have not used any features of Google+ and hadn’t even planned to! I just considered it a duplicate Facebook (which I do use a lot.) Thanks for explaining its ins and outs in a professional context. I now see this is an extremely powerful tool for managing PLNs via connecting to others and discovering, sharing and organising content.

    • jetz66 says:

      Thanks for that! I think that it has the potential, as you say, to be a powerful tool. I think that its effectiveness will only increase over time as more and more people adopt this platform.

  4. David Jackson says:

    As other comments above, I didn’t realize how versatile Google+ is. I was an early adopter of the service because I was weary of Facebook’s privacy policies, but soon gave in and now use Facebook a lot. Having seen this presentation, I plan to re-visit Google+ and explore it further. Thanks.

  5. I really like Google+ in comparison to Facebook. I closed down my Facebook account about a year ago and have no regrets doing so. People have been a bit slow adapting to Google+ but it seems like we are at the tipping point. As you have laid out very thoroughly in this slide show, Google+ just makes a lot more sense for educational purposes due to its integration with Hangouts and Drive. Plus, the “circles” system allows for tiered management of contacts and different streams of interaction that is PERFECT for a school setting (again, you summed that up perfectly in your presentation). Thanks for the info!

  6. dmp6 says:

    Ryan. Great information. Since our hangout days I have investigated google+ more and seen how the suite is a great tool for education.

  7. milenab says:

    I went to a workshop a while ago on Google so I began to dabble with it, as we’ve been told that our board wants to move our teacher accounts in that direction, but I truly appreciate your tutorial as it is giving me the opportunity to experience features I didn’t realize Google+ had. Thanks!

  8. amb585 says:

    I think a lot of us have an account but have never really got around to using it. I am particularly interested in the potential of the google hangouts. Might be time to dig up that old password. Thank you for the information!

  9. bmehregani says:

    I think that Google+ is useful in educational settings, even at the high school level.

    I think that building and sharing knowledge peer-to-peer is a great way for students to learn from each other. A lot of learning can happen this way.

    To be on the safe side, I think that high school teachers should get signed permission from parents. Also, there would have to be Plan B and Plan C just in case some high school students will not be allowed to use Google+ in a peer-to-peer online learning environment.

    I don’t think that Google+ could work in a K-7/8/9 setting for many obvious reasons even though many people might think otherwise.

    In all, Google+ is a great social networking service to create online learning communities for teachers and for older/adult students.

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