Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Google's Chromebook in Education

Joshua Kim has some suggestions for making the Chromebook more attractive to the education market. Interestingly, his biggest point is to create or buy (he suggest Canvas) a Google LMS that supports offline access.

Google's Chromebook LMS Limitation - Technology and Learning:
The Chromebook requires a Google LMS (learning management system) if Google hopes to significantly displace Microsoft or Apple in higher ed.

I say "Google LMS", because I don't believe that existing LMS's, in conjunction with the current Chromebook applications, offers students enough capabilities to ditch their MacBooks or Windows laptops. The Chromebook will ship with offline versions of GMail, Google Docs, and Google Calendar - but the lack of an offline and fully integrated LMS will limit higher ed adoption.

This is what I'd do if I ran the Education Group at Google (do they have such a group? Who runs it?):
  • Figure out the best way to create a Google LMS. Maybe this is a build from scratch project. Perhaps buying an existing platform makes sense. Instructure's Canvas LMS might be very appealing. The Google LMS will need full offline capabilities, synching when connected.
  • Fully integrate this new Google LMS into the Google Apps suite (including YouTube).
  • Beef up some of the Google Apps for education. I'd start with Google Presentation, building in voice-over recording and presentation capabilities for rapid authoring.
  • Partner with the Open Education providers, like M.I.T. and Carnegie Mellon, to develop a suite of world-class courses available for free educational use in the new Google LMS.
  • Build the Google LMS from the ground-up to work with mobile (Android) as well as through the browser.
Simple, right?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If you are considering Chromebooks for your institution, but don't want to leave your Windows apps behind, you should look at Ericom AccessNow, a pure HTML5 RDP client that enables students and staff to connect to any RDP host, including Terminal Server (RDS Session Host), physical desktops or VDI virtual
desktops – and run their applications and desktops in a browser.

This means that you can use AccessNow for instant, turnkey web-enablement of most any Windows application. Running entirely within a browser, AccessNow works natively with Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer (with Chrome Frame plug-in), Firefox and any other browser with HTML5 and WebSockets support.

Ericom‘s AccessNow does not require Java, Flash, Silverlight, ActiveX, or any other underlying technology to be installed on end-user devices.

For more information on Ericom's AccessNow solution for education, please visit:


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