Google Apps is a collection of web-based programs and file storage that run in a web browser. The applications include communication tools (Gmail, Google Talk, and Google Calendar), productivity tools (Google Docs: text files, spreadsheets, and presentations), a customizable start page (iGoogle), and Google Sites (to develop web pages). Google stores all of the files and content centrally and keeps a record of the different versions of a file. With Google Apps, sharing content is as simple as granting someone access, which facilitates collaboration, peer review of academic materials, and the collective generation of knowledge.
The "7 Things You Should Know About..." series from the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI) provides concise information on emerging learning technologies. Each brief focuses on a single technology and describes what it is, where it is going, and why it matters to teaching and learning. Use these briefs for a no-jargon, quick overview of a topic and share them with time-pressed colleagues.
In addition to the "7 Things You Should Know About…" briefs, you may find other ELI resources useful in addressing teaching, learning, and technology issues at your institution. To learn more, please visit the ELI Resources page.