As many teachers and schools prepare for the 2016/2017 school year, it is a great time reflect on the excitement that many teachers and schools have shared with us over the past year as they began using OneNote Class Notebooks the first time.
We heard from teachers all around the world about the enthusiasm that has been bubbling around this new way of working. We heard from a teacher in Florida who told us how class notebooks have changed her life, a teacher from Wales who describes his school’s journey finding OneNote Class Notebooks and a Lithuanian teacher who uses class notebooks as an ePortfolio. In the UK, we heard from a school that declared OneNote has revolutionized the way they work. We had the chance to meet many of you in June at ISTE, including a teacher who told us the story of how class notebooks and her excitement for them inspired her to reconsider retirement and keep teaching this year. We have also continued listening and working with teachers, who have been the inspiration for the next set of improvements that we are rolling out today.
Improvements to the Class Notebook app based on teacher feedback
Today, we are rolling out new features and improvements across 44 languages and 63 markets. These 2016 back-to-school improvements will help save teachers valuable time in the classroom as well as allow OneNote Class Notebooks to be even more organized.
On the homepage of the Office 365 Class Notebook app, we updated the old Get Notebook Links button to include the new Manage notebooks button, and all of the improvements can be found under this button.
By clicking the Manage notebooks button, a teacher can see all of his/her class notebooks on one page with an expanded set of capabilities, including:
- Rename student sections—If you want to rename any student sections, click the pencil icon and type the new name of the section. Be sure to press Save after adding the student sections.
- Add section—To distribute a new section to all students, simply click the Add section button. Be sure to press Save after adding the student sections.
- Enable Teacher-Only section group—The Teacher-Only section group is a private space where only the teacher can see what is inside—students cannot see anything. To add a Teacher-Only section group to your class notebook, click the Enable Teacher-Only section group link. Co-teachers also have access into the Teacher-Only section group.
- Lock Collaboration Space—Enabling this feature makes the Collaboration Space read-only (or locked down) to disallow any students from editing. You can move the switch between a locked and unlocked state.
- Open—Clicking this link opens the class notebook.
- Link to the class notebook—Provides easy way to copy the class notebook link to share with others.
New Manage notebooks space.
Class Notebook add-in is moving from preview to general availability
The Class Notebook Add-in Preview is the result of feedback and collaboration from teachers and school staff, whose input helped build these new tools. We’ve seen an amazing response to the add-in for our OneNote 2013 and 2016 teachers. In June, we also added many of the capabilities to our OneNote Mac app. Today, we are moving the OneNote Class Notebook add-in from preview to generally availability (GA). This means that IT admins and school staff should feel confident deploying the Class Notebook add-in broadly across a district, and it is officially now “Version 1.” In addition to announcing general availability, we all have some new updates detailed below:
- GA in 44 languages and 63 markets.
- Edmodo assignment and grade support.
- Firefly Learning assignment and grade support.
- Improved help and feedback options.
- For IT admins—Group Policy support for prepopulating LMS and SIS information.
- New group policy deployment page: Class Notebook add-in group policy.
- General Download Center information.
To manually update your add-on just click the Update button that should appear if you have an older version of the add-in. This will download the latest version and also install the GA version.
We hope you are excited to try out the 2016 back-to-school improvements! The OneNote Class Notebook team will continue listening to teacher and school staff feedback. As usual, please reach out to us on Twitter @OneNoteEDU or drop us a line at OneNoteEDU@microsoft.com.
And don’t forget: Office 365 Education is free for students and teachers! Get yours at Office.com/education.
—The OneNote team