Google Apps

Google for Education

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Google Apps for Education is Wellesley College's system for email, shared documents, group discussions, courses, chat, and more.
We recommend using Google's Chrome web browser when working within the Google Apps product suite for best performance.

Questions about Google Apps?

  • For general questions, contact the Computing Help Desk at 781-283-3333 or email
  • For course-related questions, contact Instructional Technology at 781-283-4848.
  • Search for your questions in Google's excellent Help Center
  • Explore our customized Wellesley documentation for Google Apps using the sidebar on the left.

What's new in Google Apps:


Avoid version conflicts when editing Microsoft Office files in Drive (Coming in August 2018)

Google is adding a new feature to Google Drive that lets you see when other people are editing files in Microsoft Office products.

When you open a Microsoft Word, Powerpoint or Excel document from your Drive File Stream folder, Google will check to see if anyone else is currently editing the document. Google will then let you know if it’s safe to edit or if you should wait. Drive may tell you:

  • Safe to edit: No one else is editing. 
  • Wait to edit: Other people are editing, so your edits will create multiple, conflicting versions. 
  • New version created: Another editor saved a newer version of the file. 
  • New version created (conflict): While you were editing the file, another editor also edited it. Click for a side-by-side comparison to help you create one version.

Better manage your work and personal time with Google Calendar (July 2018)

Whether you’re on vacation or just offline at the end of your workday, Google Calendar can help protect your time out of the office. Google is introducing a new out of office option and customizable working hours to further improve your digital well-being.

You will soon be able to do the following:

  • Indicate when you’re going out of office when creating an event, so others wil know you're unavailable. You can even customize the messages people get when trying to schedule during these times.
  • Restrict your working hours using different intervals for different days.  You could do this before, but only for the same time across all working days.  This allows those with more varied schedules to accurately include their work hours.

New ways to comment on PDFs and Microsoft Office files in Google Drive (February 2018)

You can now comment directly on more file types within Google Drive, including Microsoft Office files, PDFs and images - without having to convert them into Docs, Sheets or Slides.

In the Drive preview pane, comment, assign tasks, or mention coworkers and the people you work can reply back. 

"Can View" access on these files will allow you to read comments, but not add new ones.  "Can Comment", "Can Edit", and "Owner" are the permissions that have access to add comments.

In addition to making comments while previewing files, you can also make inline comments, for example:

  • Draw a rectangle on a PDF, or PowerPoint (.pptx), or image file and make an anchored comment.
  • Select a sentence in a MS Office Word (.docx), or PowerPoint (.pptx), or PDF file and make an anchored comment (similar to comments in Google Docs).
  • Select a cell in MS Office Excel (.xlsx) file and make a cell-based comment.

When exporting files with .xlsx, .docx, .pptx, and PDF extensions, all Google Drive Comments will be added to the file during the export.

Search within a folder in Google Drive (January 2018)

By the end of January, you will be able to search for content in a specific folder in Google Drive.

Select the drop-down in the search bar and choose the folder you want from the Location menu, or right-click on a folder and search within that folder.

Only folders that are within your My Drive or within Team Drives can be searched; if you have a folder that is shared with you, first add the folder to your My Drive.

The top 20 ways to use Google Apps for Administrative Assistants

Google has an excellent list of tips on how Administrative Assistants can best use Google Apps. Tips include managing email and calendars of other people, organizing events, setting up email filters, creating canned responses and multiple signatures, creating mailing lists, and more.