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Google Apps: Docs

A basic guide to using Google Apps at Willamette

What are Google Docs?

These are word processing documents which are edited much like any other word processing documents.

You can save these documents to your Google drive and share them with other people for a group-created and group-edited document.

Creating Google Docs

To create a new Google document, go to and log in with your Willamette e-mail address and password.

You can then click the "Create" button on the left side of the screen and choose what type of document you want to make.

Uses of Google Docs

There are a lot of ways teachers and students can use Google Docs in and out of the classroom. Some uses include:

  • group editing papers in class
  • use revision history to hold students accountable for their work in collaborative projects
  • provide feedback on student essays without fussing with papers or schedules
  • create a class glossary that everyone can access and add to
  • share, comment, and collaborate on reading assignments
  • revert back to old version of group edited documents if the changes didn't work

For more ideas on educational uses of Google Docs, check out 50 Little-Known Ways Google Docs Can Help In Education.

Accessing Google Docs

You can access your Google Docs from any computer using your Willamette login information.

1) Go to

2) Login with your Willamette e-mail address and password. 

You can now view your documents or create a new one!

Sharing Google Docs

Once you have created your document, you can share it with colleagues by using the "Share" button in the upper right corner of the screen.


You can invite specific people to your document and allow them to view, edit, or comment on your document.

You can also change the sharing settings on your document in order to give access publicly, through Willamette, privately, or by link only.

Discussions via Google Docs

An interesting use for Google Docs that illustrates how easy it is to collaborate.

Subject Guide

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Bill Kelm
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Mark O. Hatfield Library
Willamette University
900 State Street
Salem, OR 97301
Subjects: Research Tools, Zotero

To Convert or Not to Convert?

When you want to add an existing Word document to Google Docs, you have the option to Upload with or without conversion.

If you only upload the document, it remains a Word document and cannot be edited.

If you choose the option to convert the uploaded file to Google Docs format. This takes it out of its original format and makes it a true "Google Doc," able to be edited just like a document created in Google Docs.

Willamette University

Willamette University Libraries

Mark O. Hatfield Library
900 State Street.
Salem Oregon 97301
Pacific Northwest College of Art Library
511 NW Broadway.
Portland Oregon 97209