Google Announces Coursework API For Education

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Despite a recent spat with officials over student data collection practices, Google is a huge force in the push to merge tech and education, if not the outright dominant party. While rivals Microsoft and Apple do have their own educational offerings, none are quite as feature-rich and developer friendly as Google's ecosystem, which explains quite nicely why it's the top pick at the moment. In keeping with that, Google announced at its annual I/O developer conference today that they would be rolling out a new API called Coursework, made to integrate with the Classroom API launched last year and make it easier for developers to get involved in the classroom workflow for both faculty and students.

Some of the features of the new API include the ability to sync grades and assignment records so that educators won't have to manually enter them, as well as improved workflow management. Developers and educators alike can now access, create and modify assignments, lesson plans and the like to streamline student and faculty workflow management. Since any changes sync universally, teachers can work hand in hand with school faculty such as guidance counselors and principals more easily, as well as being able to give developers access to data that will make it easier for them to decide how to go about creating the next assignment, lesson or piece of educational software to be used. OpenEd, a K-12 open education resource library, as well as educational coding platform Tynker and interactive visual mathematics platform GeoCobra have already signed on to use the new APIs.

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On top of rolling out the new Coursework API, Google announced that they are adding some new features and endpoints to the Classroom API. Developers can now access Google Drive folders and files for the class, including modifying items in those areas and leaving new files for educators to use. Course groups can also be defined to manage file permissions such as who can modify a file, sharing controls and other authorizations. In the coming months, Google plans to further expand the coursework API. As new features hit, they'll be posted on the developer forum and the issue tracker for the Coursework API.