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Sharing a Google Doc Template for Students

Process of creating a Google Doc that students can use as a template

Instructional Challenge

Many active learning activities identified a need to create a document template that students can access as they collaborate with other students on in-class activities. Once done with the document, the instructor can access and view the results and provide feedback if necessary. This document walks you through creating and sharing a document in Google Docs.


Creating Content

  1. Access UW-Madison Google Apps by going to and selecting Log In to Your UW-Madison Google Apps Account.
  2. Enter your NetID and password, then select log-in.
  3. You should be automatically redirected to Google Drive. If not, you can find it in the apps menu in the upper right corner.
  4. Once you are in Google Drive, you can create content by selecting the Create button. There are six options under this menu. Select the desired application type (Document, Spreadsheet, Presentation, etc.)
  5. Google Apps automatically saves as you go along. When you are finished, you can return to your Google Drive by clicking the button in the upper left corner. (The color of this button will vary depending on what type of content you are creating.)
  6. Create your document.
  7. Add a line at the top of the document: "Make sure to share this document with the instructor. My email address is ""

Sharing Content

  1. To share a document in Google Drive, right-click the item you want to share and select Share from the dropdown menu.
  2. In the Get Link box, select UW-Madison G Suite to specify that users must use their UW-Madison Google Apps account to view the document. You need to select the Change link below the words "Anyone at/on .....can view". Note: This setting will require students to use their UW-Madison account to access this document. This will ensure you can identify students by their official name, instead of their personal Google account, which may not be identifiable.
  3. Select Editor to specify that they have the right to edit the document. Select Done
  4. Paste that link at the top of your document
  5. Delete all text after the /edit in the URL and replace it with /copy.
    Example: to
  6. Share this link with students by creating a link in Canvas modules.

Accessing Content By Students

  1. If students are working in groups, direct one student to select the link to create a version of the document for the group. When students select the link, they will be prompted to Make a Copy of the document. It will be saved in their own Google Drive folder.
  2. Students must share access to edit rights with the other group members.
  3. Once students are done working on the document, they should grant you access/edit rights using the email address at the top.

Keywordssharing, template, google, documentDoc ID104202
OwnerTimmo D.GroupInstructional Resources
Created2020-07-21 14:02:55Updated2024-04-16 09:10:06
SitesCenter for Teaching, Learning & Mentoring
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