Google Plus is overlooked by many educators when compared to Twitter and other social media, but it’s really worth looking at; particularly (in my opinion) if you are a Google Apps for Education school, but equally if you are not.
It has lots of great features like Hangouts, Communities and Collections which make it a great place for professional learning and personal professional development – far more in fact than Twitter. All you need is a Google account to get started.
You can post and share just like you can on Twitter but with more characters and more opportunities for extended discussions.
In Communities you can curate discussions and topics around a theme as you would like it (if you make your own) or how it has been set up for you. They can be set to private too and are a great location for schools to share in teaching and learning communities.
I could go on for a long time about how great Google+ is, but why not check it out for yourself – and if you have already and didn’t persevere, why not go back and try again. Trust me, it’s great.
As with the other crib sheets, if you think I’ve missed something that could / should be added, please let me know in the comments.
I hope you find it useful!
Couldn’t agree more! G+ is ideal and now that it can easily integrate with Office 365 (I’m no expert so please ask Mark A not Mark B!) there seems little point in investing in anything else. What would be brilliant ….. a fully integrated and bespoke MIS that does what you want and is cheap!
Another really useful thing with G+ is that you can set up private communities to encourage sharing within a school. This is often a great first step towards getting teachers used to the idea of sharing their successes and – more importantly – their failures in a safe, secure environment before they make the leap of doing that in public. I do this with every school I work with, and it’s fascinating to see the different ways in which that idea gets customised.
I do the exact same thing Mark; this was a beginner’s guide though. Good to know we’re on the same page though 🙂 Thanks for taking the time to comment!
Nice overview! I think should also consider following and creating Collections, rather than just posting to public and following individuals. For example, I have Google+ Collections on a number of different topics, and people can pick and choose which ones they are interested in following, rather than following everything I post. It also lets me organize my posts, which makes them easier to share.
Also, just so you know, Google Hangouts and Hangouts on Air no longer require a Google+ profile (and hasn’t for a while). You can participate in Hangouts at hangouts.google.com and you can set up and run a Hangout on Air from your YouTube channel’s Live Events (www.youtube.com/my_live_events). So, while I think Google+ is really excellent, you don’t need to have a profile if using Hangouts is your main interest.