Teaching with Google Classroom: Claimed Usage, Perceived Effects and the Potential for Subject Learning

I just read this research by Eva Svensson, Ann-Marie Pendrill, Susanne Pelger. doi: 10.24834/educare.2020.4.7

It is actually close to our findings in our master thesis , “ Better exam results; how students and school leadership learn when introducing new technology such as OneNote in school”. It also supports the findings in my new book.  teachers knowledge of how to use technology is important for students’ learning. Pedagogical use of technology encouraging student collaboration and agency.

Here are some of the highlights from the Swedish study  

The use of digital tools in education is subject to debate in school as well as in wider society. This motivates studies on the potential of these tools to facilitate teaching and learning. One of the digital tools being used is Google Classroom (GC). In order to increase knowledge of its usage and effects in content teaching, semi-structured interviews were conducted with 18 teachers in Swedish compulsory school. The aim is thus to answer three research questions: 1) How do teachers describe their usage of GC in teaching? 2) What effects of using GC do teachers perceive? 3) How can GC be used to develop students’ communicative and metacognitive abilities?


Key factors for success when implementing digital or blended learning, as identified in earlier studies, are promoting a) accessibility, b) collaboration and c) agency (Heggart & Yoo, 2018), and d) asynchronous work (Northey, 2015).

Interviewed teachers were considered skilled users of GC but described differing perceptions of the affordances of the tool, which had been used for up to18 months at the time of the interviews. Thapa & Hatakka (2017) suggest that these differing perceptions may be explained by users’ varying technological as well as pedagogical ability. Having an interest in integrating technology in teaching is not enough when it comes to implementing GC in the classroom. Most teachers in this study focused on structure and organization, while other used the resource to effectively support students’ communicative and metacognitive abilities and agency. With a pedagogical focus in digital professional development on using a digital tool in education this gap may be narrowed.

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