Get Accurate Grades Instantly with an Online Grader

As technology advances, so do the methods educators use to grade student work. Gone are the days when teachers would spend countless hours wading through stacks of papers, writing comments in the margins, and calculating grades by hand. Nowadays, online graders make it possible to streamline the grading process and get accurate results in a fraction of the time. 

Understanding Online Graders

Online graders are automated tools that use algorithms to analyze and evaluate student work, easily scan and upload graded work, and assign grades based on pre-defined criteria. These tools can be used for a variety of assignments, including essays, quizzes, and exams. While some online graders are designed for specific subject areas, others can be used across multiple disciplines. 

What is an Online Grader?

An online grader is a web-based tool that automatically evaluates and grades student work, using pre-programmed rules and guidelines. These tools can be used by educators to save time and provide objective feedback to students. 

Online graders have become increasingly popular in recent years, as they allow educators to grade assignments more efficiently and accurately. By automating the grading process, educators can focus on other important tasks, such as lesson planning and student interaction. 

How Do Online Graders Work?

Online graders use a variety of methods to analyze student work, including keyword analysis, grammar checks, and statistical analysis. Depending on the tool, some online graders may also use machine learning algorithms to adapt to individual student writing styles and provide more accurate grading. 

One of the key benefits of using an online grader is that it can provide instant feedback to students. This feedback can help students to identify areas where they need improvement and can encourage them to be more engaged in the learning process. 

Another benefit of using an online grader is that it can help to reduce grading bias. Because online graders evaluate student work based on pre-defined criteria, they are less likely to be influenced by factors such as race, gender, or socioeconomic status. 

Benefits of Using an Online Grader

There are several benefits to using an online grader. A few benefits include:

  • Saves educators time by automating the grading process
  • Frees up more time for lesson planning, student interaction, and other important tasks
  • Provide objective feedback to students, helping them to identify areas where they need improvement

By providing instant feedback, online graders can also encourage students to be more engaged in the learning process. 

Another benefit of using an online grader is that it can help to promote consistency in grading. Because online graders evaluate student work based on pre-defined criteria, they are less likely to be influenced by personal biases or preferences. This can help to ensure that all students are graded fairly and consistently. 

Finally, online graders can help to reduce the workload for educators, particularly in large classes. By automating the grading process, educators can grade assignments more quickly and efficiently, allowing them to focus on other important tasks. 

Choosing the Right Online Grader for Your Needs

When it comes to choosing an online grader, there are several things to consider. Online graders can save time and reduce grading errors, but it’s important to choose the right tool for your needs.

One important consideration is the type of assignments you’ll be grading. Some online graders are better suited for multiple-choice or short-answer assignments, while others are designed for essays and longer written assignments.

Features to Look for in an Online Grader

In addition to assignment type, there are several features to look for in an online grader. Customizable grading criteria is a must-have feature, as it allows you to tailor your grading to the specific requirements of each assignment. Support for multiple file formats is also important, as it allows students to submit assignments in the format they prefer.

Integration with popular learning management systems like Google Classroom, Blackboard, or Canvas can also be a time-saver, as it allows you to grade assignments without having to switch between different platforms. Additionally, some online graders may offer features like plagiarism checks and automated feedback based on common errors, which can further streamline the grading process.

Comparing Popular Online Grading Tools

There are several popular online grading tools available today, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Turnitin is a popular choice for its plagiarism detection capabilities, while GradeCam is known for its ease of use and support for multiple-choice assignments. Gradescope is another popular option, particularly for its ability to grade complex assignments like coding projects.

When comparing different tools, it’s important to consider factors like cost, ease of use, and the specific features offered. Some tools may be better suited for certain types of assignments or for specific grade levels.

Integrating Online Graders into Your Classroom with GRADED+

A shining example of a great online grader tool that brings a unique aspect to the grading process is GRADED+. GRADED+ is a student work scanner app for teachers that captures graded student work and uploads it quickly to their database in Google Classroom. If you’re a teacher using Google Classroom, GRADED+ offers the best integration for uploading graded student work of any online grading app.

This app goes beyond the typical features of an online grader by not only streamlining the grading process but also by effectively storing and organizing graded assignments. This can be incredibly helpful for educators who want to keep track of students’ progress over time.

With GRADED+, teachers can quickly scan physical student assignments, instantly record the grades, and store this information digitally. This feature is particularly beneficial when grading handwritten work or projects that don’t lend themselves to traditional online grading methods. GRADED+ seamlessly bridges the gap between physical and digital grading, making it an invaluable tool in the modern classroom.

The convenience and efficiency offered by GRADED+ are unrivaled. This app saves time for teachers by automating the manual process of recording grades and is built to seamlessly integrate with Google Classroom, where all student grades can be accessed easily. GRADED+ can be integrated into your existing learning management systems, ensuring a seamless transition between platforms.

online grader for teachers

Customizing Your Online Grader Experience

Once you’ve chosen an online grader, it’s important to customize it to meet your specific needs. This may include setting up grading criteria, creating rubrics, and adjusting settings to optimize grading accuracy. Many online graders offer tutorials or support resources to help you get started.

It’s also important to communicate with your students about how the online grader works and what they can expect. This may include providing instructions on how to submit assignments and how to access feedback.

By carefully considering your needs and choosing the right online grader, you can streamline your grading process and save time while still providing valuable feedback to your students.

What to Consider with Online Graders

When it comes to integrating an online grader into your classroom, there are several steps to consider. Online graders can be a useful tool for streamlining grading, providing feedback, and tracking student progress. However, it’s important to choose the right tool and set it up correctly to get the most out of it.

Setting Up Your Online Grader Account

The first step in integrating an online grader into your classroom is to set up an account. Many online grading tools offer free trials, so you can test them out before committing to a subscription. When choosing a tool, consider factors such as ease of use, compatibility with your learning management system, and the features you need.

Once you’ve chosen a tool, you’ll need to set up your account. This may involve creating a username and password, entering your school or district information, and selecting your grading preferences. Some tools may also require you to verify your email address or provide payment information.

Importing and Exporting Student Data

Once you’ve set up your online grader account, you’ll need to import student data. This may include student rosters, assignment details, and grading criteria. Some online graders may also allow you to export student grades to your learning management system.

Importing student data can be a time-consuming process, but it’s important to do it correctly to ensure that your grading is accurate and efficient. Be sure to double-check your data before importing it, and make sure that your grading criteria are clear and consistent.

Graded Plus student work scanner

Collaborating with Other Educators

Online graders make it easy to collaborate with other educators. Some tools allow for shared grading, which means that multiple educators can grade the same assignment and compare results. This can be a useful way to ensure that grading is fair and consistent across different classes or sections.

Additionally, some tools may offer a community forum where educators can share tips and advice for using the tool effectively. This can be a great way to learn from others and get new ideas for how to integrate online grading into your classroom.

Overall, integrating an online grader into your classroom can be a valuable way to save time, provide feedback, and track student progress. By following these steps and choosing the right tool, you can make the most of this technology and enhance your teaching practice.

Tips for Effective Online Grading

While online graders can be a valuable tool for educators, there are some best practices to follow to ensure accurate and fair grading. 

Online grading has become increasingly popular in recent years, especially with the rise of remote learning. It offers a convenient and efficient way for educators to grade assignments and provide feedback to students. However, it’s important to use online graders effectively to ensure that students receive accurate and fair grades.

Ensuring Accurate and Fair Grading

One of the most important things to keep in mind when using an online grader is to ensure that it is grading accurately and fairly. This means double-checking grading criteria, adjusting settings as needed, and manually reviewing grades for accuracy. Online graders can be helpful, but they are not perfect, and it’s important to make sure that they are not unfairly penalizing students.

Another important aspect of ensuring accurate and fair grading is to provide clear and detailed instructions to students. This can help to avoid confusion and ensure that students understand what is expected of them. It’s also important to be transparent about the grading process and to communicate with students about how their grades are being calculated.

Providing Meaningful Feedback to Students

While online graders can provide objective feedback to students, it’s important to supplement this with personalized feedback that addresses individual strengths and weaknesses. This can help students to better understand where they excel and where they need to improve. Additionally, providing meaningful feedback can help to motivate students and encourage them to continue to work hard.

One effective way to provide personalized feedback is to use a rubric that outlines specific criteria for grading. This can help to ensure that feedback is consistent and objective, while still allowing for individualized comments.

Encouraging Student Engagement with Online Grading

To encourage student engagement with online grading, it’s important to provide clear expectations and guidelines. This may include explaining how grades are calculated, providing examples of high-quality work, and encouraging students to use online grading tools as a learning tool rather than just a way to get a grade.

Another way to encourage student engagement is to provide opportunities for students to reflect on their own work and set goals for improvement. This can help to foster a sense of ownership over their own learning and encourage students to take an active role in the grading process.

Overall, online grading can be a valuable tool for educators, but it’s important to use it effectively to ensure accurate and fair grading. By providing meaningful feedback and encouraging student engagement, educators can help to maximize the benefits of online grading and support student success.


Overall, online graders can be a powerful tool for educators who want to save time and provide objective feedback to students. By choosing the right tool, customizing it to meet your needs, and following best practices for grading, you can ensure that your online grader is an effective and valuable tool for your classroom.


Exploring the Benefits of Mobile Apps in Education

In recent years, mobile apps have become increasingly popular in the education sector. And, there’s no signs of slowing: a recent study shows that the education apps market is projected to reach $101B by 2028, up from $37B in 2021. These apps offer a wide range of benefits that can enhance the learning experience for both students and educators. As we delve into the topic, let’s take a closer look at the rise of mobile apps in education and take a brief look at the history of educational apps.

The Rise of Mobile Apps in Education

Mobile apps have revolutionized the way we consume and access information. Similarly, the education sector has seen a marked increase in the use of mobile apps in recent years. With the widespread availability of smartphones and tablets, students and educators have access to educational resources and materials on the go. This accessibility has opened up new opportunities for learning and offers a more flexible approach to education.

mobile apps in education setting

A Brief History of Educational Apps

The early days of educational apps were mainly limited to drill and practice exercises, flashcards, and basic games. However, with advancements in technology, educational apps have evolved to offer a wide range of interactive and engaging learning experiences. From math and language apps to science and history, there’s an app for almost every subject.

One of the earliest educational apps was the “Speak & Spell” game, which was introduced by Texas Instruments in the late 1970s. The game helped children learn spelling and pronunciation by using a speech synthesizer. In the 1990s, educational software became more widely available on personal computers. However, it wasn’t until the rise of smartphones and tablets that educational apps truly took off.

Today, educational apps are used by students of all ages and levels, from preschoolers learning their ABCs to college students studying for exams. Many apps are designed to be fun and engaging, using game-like features to motivate students to learn. For example, the popular language-learning app Duolingo uses a points system and rewards to encourage users to practice their language skills every day.

The Growing Popularity of Mobile Learning

The benefits of mobile learning are numerous and have contributed to the growing popularity of educational apps. These benefits include:

  • Increased engagement
  • Improved motivation
  • Higher retention rates

A more personalized and interactive learning experience is another impactful benefit as well. Additionally, mobile learning has also made education more accessible to learners who may have limited access to traditional educational resources.

Mobile learning can take many forms, from watching educational videos on YouTube to completing interactive quizzes on a mobile app. One popular example of mobile learning is the “flipped classroom” model, where students watch lectures or complete readings at home and then come to class to work on assignments and projects. This model allows for more personalized and interactive classroom time, as well as the flexibility to learn at one’s own pace.

Another benefit of mobile learning is that it can be done anytime, anywhere. Students can access educational materials on their smartphones or tablets while on the bus, waiting in line, or even during a break at work. This flexibility allows for a more integrated approach to learning, where education becomes a part of one’s daily routine rather than something that is done only in a classroom.

The rise of mobile apps in education has opened up new opportunities for learning and offers a more flexible approach to education. With the benefits of increased engagement, motivation, and accessibility, it’s no surprise that educational apps are becoming more and more popular among students and educators alike.

Enhancing Student Engagement and Motivation

Effective education is about more than just acquiring knowledge; it’s about engaging learners, making them enthusiastic about the subject matter, and motivating them to learn. Let’s explore several ways in which mobile apps can enhance student engagement and motivation.

Interactive Learning Experiences

One major benefit of educational apps is the interactive learning experiences they offer. Traditional education methods often rely on passive learning through lectures, but educational apps allow for real-time feedback and interaction. This can greatly enhance student engagement and motivation, making the learning experience more enjoyable and effective.

For example, an app that teaches math concepts could have interactive games that allow students to practice their skills in a fun and engaging way. The app could also provide instant feedback, letting students know if they got an answer right or wrong, and offering tips for improvement.

Gamification in Educational Apps

Another way in which mobile apps can enhance student motivation is through gamification. Educational apps that incorporate gamification elements, such as rewards, badges, and levels, can make learning seem like a fun challenge rather than a tedious task. This keeps students motivated and engaged throughout the learning process.

Imagine an app that teaches language skills, such as vocabulary and grammar. The app could have a points system where students earn points for completing lessons and quizzes, and can then use those points to unlock new levels or earn badges. This type of gamification can make learning a language feel like a game, keeping students engaged and motivated to continue learning.

Personalized Learning Paths

Finally, mobile apps can offer personalized learning paths that cater to individual learning styles and preferences. This customization ensures that the educational experience is tailored to the individual student, making learning more efficient and effective.

For example, an app that teaches history could ask students questions about their interests and then offer lessons and activities that align with those interests. If a student is interested in ancient Egypt, for example, the app could offer lessons on the pyramids and pharaohs. This type of personalized learning can help students feel more connected to the subject matter and more motivated to learn.

It’s clear mobile apps offer a variety of ways to enhance student engagement and motivation. Interactive learning experiences, gamification, and personalized learning paths are just a few examples of how educational apps can make learning more effective and enjoyable. By incorporating these elements into education, we can help students become more enthusiastic and motivated learners.

Improving Accessibility and Flexibility

Mobile apps in education are not only beneficial in terms of enhancing student engagement and motivation, but they can also improve accessibility and flexibility in education. In this section, we will explore several ways in which mobile apps can improve accessibility and flexibility.

Learning on the Go

One of the most significant benefits of mobile apps in education is the ability to learn on the go. Students no longer have to be confined to the classroom or library to learn; they can access educational resources wherever they are. This flexibility allows for a more personalized and efficient learning experience that fits into busy lifestyles.

For example, a student who has a part-time job or is an athlete can use mobile apps to learn during their downtime. They can watch educational videos, complete quizzes, and participate in discussions while waiting for a bus, during a break at work, or while traveling to a game or competition. This flexibility ensures that students can make the most of their time and learn at their own pace.

Bridging the Digital Divide

Mobile apps in education can also bridge the digital divide by providing underprivileged learners with access to educational resources they may not otherwise have had. This inclusivity ensures that learners from all backgrounds have the opportunity to access the same high-quality educational resources.

For instance, students from rural areas or low-income families may not have access to the same educational resources as their peers in urban areas or higher-income families. However, with mobile apps, these students can access educational materials, such as textbooks, videos, and interactive simulations, that they may not have been able to access otherwise. This can help level the playing field and ensure that all students have an equal opportunity to succeed.

Supporting Students with Special Needs

Mobile apps in education can provide additional support for students with special needs, such as those with visual or hearing impairments. With the use of assistive technologies, such as text-to-speech and audio descriptions, these learners can access educational content and interact with the learning materials like never before.

For example, a student with a visual impairment can use a mobile app that converts text to speech to read a textbook or an article. Similarly, a student with a hearing impairment can use an app that provides audio descriptions to understand a video or a lecture. These assistive technologies can help students with special needs overcome barriers to learning and participate fully in the educational experience.

Facilitating Collaboration and Communication

Mobile apps in education are not just for individual learners; they can also facilitate collaboration and communication. Here, we’ll explore several ways in which mobile apps can facilitate collaboration and communication between students and teachers as well as between peers.

Connecting Students and Teachers

Mobile apps can facilitate communication and collaboration between students and teachers outside of the classroom. Educational apps that offer messaging and chat features allow for communication that is instant, convenient, and private. This open line of communication can foster stronger relationships between students and teachers, leading to a more efficient and effective learning experience.

For example, a language learning app can have a messaging feature where students can ask their teacher for help with specific grammar rules or vocabulary. This feature allows students to get the help they need when they need it, without having to wait until the next class. Additionally, the messaging feature can be used for students to submit their homework or assignments, making it easier for teachers to grade and provide feedback.

There are also mobile apps like GRADED+ that allow teachers to streamline their workflow and quickly upload graded student work into their classroom database.

Peer-to-Peer Learning Opportunities

Mobile apps can also facilitate peer-to-peer learning opportunities. Educational apps that offer group activities and discussion forums provide opportunities for students to learn from each other. This type of collaborative learning can enhance the learning experience by promoting the sharing of ideas and fostering critical thinking skills.

For instance, a history learning app can have a discussion forum where students can share their insights on a particular event or period. This feature can encourage students to think critically about historical events and develop their analytical skills. Moreover, students can learn from their peers’ perspectives and gain a deeper understanding of the topic.

Parental Involvement in Education

Finally, mobile apps can foster parental involvement in education. By providing parents with access to educational resources and progress reports, educational apps can improve communication between parents and teachers. This collaboration ensures that everyone is on the same page and working together to support the success of the learner.

For example, a math learning app can have a progress report feature that allows parents to track their child’s progress in the subject. This feature can help parents identify areas where their child may need additional help and communicate with the teacher to develop a plan to support their child’s learning.

Mobile apps can facilitate collaboration and communication between students, teachers, and parents. These features can enhance the learning experience by providing students with the help they need, promoting critical thinking skills, and improving communication between stakeholders. As the use of mobile technology continues to grow, we can expect to see more innovative ways in which mobile apps can support education.


Mobile apps in education offer a wide range of benefits that can enhance the learning experience for both students and educators. From improving accessibility and flexibility to facilitating collaboration and communication, mobile apps are transforming the education sector like never before.


Student Work is the Most Important Data for Educators 

​​While attendance rates, test scores and other easy-to-collect metrics have long been used to evaluate and inform education policy, actual student work is a major data void in most research studies. Although collecting, storing and analyzing hand-written student work presents logistical and technological challenges, new tools (scanning apps in particular) have emerged to simplify the process. Policy makers, educational leaders and teachers have an opportunity to push forward student work as a key data input for future research.  

In this blog post, we’ll explore the benefits of hand-written student work compared to an increasing reliance on digital assignments (via Learning Management Systems like Google Classroom), and offer strategies for teachers to manage, save, and analyze hand-written student work as a structured data set. 

If teachers, schools and districts are better equipped to systematically save and digitize hand-written student work, massive data sets will emerge to one day train artificial intelligence tutors and to improve content-specific professional development. 


Student Work in Academic Research

The United States Department of Education (USDE) has cited research from studies analyzing student work. In its publication “What Works Clearinghouse: Procedures and Standards Handbook,” the USDE cites several studies that analyze student work as a key method for evaluating the effectiveness of educational interventions (U.S. Department of Education, 2019). Key findings include:

“The analysis of student work can provide valuable insights into student thinking and learning. By analyzing student work, educators and researchers can identify patterns in student reasoning and problem-solving strategies, better understand student misconceptions and errors, and tailor their teaching strategies accordingly.”


In the “National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) 2019 Mathematics and Reading Assessments Report,” the USDE cites research on the use of hand-written student work to assess student thinking and reasoning in mathematics (National Center for Education Statistics, 2020). Key findings include:

“The use of hand-written student work in assessments can provide a more accurate measure of student thinking and reasoning than multiple-choice or other types of assessments. By requiring students to produce hand-written work, educators and researchers can gain insights into student thinking and problem-solving strategies that are not available through other assessment methods. By gaining a deeper understanding of student thinking and learning, educators can tailor their teaching strategies to address common misconceptions or errors and help students develop a more robust conceptual understanding of mathematical concepts.”



Digital Vs. Hand-Written Student Work

While digital assignments have many advantages, research shows that handwriting has significant benefits for students’ learning and development. Strategies for managing, collecting and storing hand-written student work for future research and analysis include:


1) Digitize/Scan hand-written student work

Scan or take a photo of each student’s hand-written work to create a digital backup. This will ensure that you have a permanent record of the work that can be easily accessed and shared with other educators or parents. We’ve included a list of scanner apps for your reference. 

Check out this blog post on how to use these scanner apps to save hand-written student work to Google Classroom. 


2) Create a rubric or checklist

Create a rubric or checklist to assess hand-written student work consistently. This will help you analyze the work more effectively and provide specific feedback to students. Education expert, Catlin Tucker, has great content on designing effective rubrics and her site includes free rubric resources. Further, has some great FREE rubric available here


3. Involve students in the process

Involve students in the organization and analysis of their own hand-written work. Encourage them to reflect on their work and identify areas of strength and weakness. This will help students take ownership of their learning and develop important self-assessment skills. 

Students can easily snap a photo or use a scanning app to submit hand-written assignments directly to Google Classroom and other Learning Management Systems. Allocate 5 minutes of scanning time at the end of each week for students to scan all the assignments for the week into Google Drive, Google Classroom, Dropbox or other cloud storage tools. 


Why Is Hand-Written Student Work So Important?

In the transition to the current digital age, students are increasingly completing their assignments inside of Learning Management Systems. However, recent studies have shown that handwriting has significant benefits for students’ learning and retention.  

Students in school districts that seek to better collect, manage and analyze hand-written student work will also benefit from the many positive effects of learning through physical writing. Let’s dive into some of the learning benefits students reap from handwriting their work.


Student Benefits of Hand-Written Student Work

Better Memory Retention

Research shows that writing by hand improves memory retention compared to typing on a computer. A study by Mueller and Oppenheimer (2014) found that college students who took notes by hand performed better on conceptual questions than those who typed their notes. The researchers suggest that the process of writing by hand engages the brain more effectively, leading to better retention of the material, and improved comprehension.


Handwriting engages multiple senses

Through handwriting, students engage their senses including touch, sight, and kinesthetic feedback. These sensory experiences can lead to better comprehension of the material. A study by Longcamp et al. (2008) found that children who learned to write by hand had better letter recognition and produced more words in a written task than those who used a keyboard. The researchers suggest that the kinesthetic feedback of handwriting may activate neural circuits in the brain that improve language learning and comprehension. 


Increased Creativity

Handwriting allows for greater creativity and personal expression than typing. A study by Slepian and Ambady (2012) found that participants who wrote by hand were more creative than those who typed on a keyboard. The researchers suggest that handwriting may facilitate more fluid and flexible thinking, leading to increased creativity and originality. 


Improved Fine Motor Skills

Handwriting requires fine motor skills, which are important for overall development and academic success. A study by James and Engelhardt (2012) found that children who practiced handwriting had better fine motor skills and letter recognition than those who did not. The researchers suggest that handwriting may promote the development of neural pathways that are important for fine motor control and overall cognitive functioning. 


Use Technology to Aid Analysis

There are several technologies designed for teachers that can be useful for analyzing hand-written student work, such as is an app designed to help teachers and educators manage and grade student work more efficiently. The app includes a variety of features, including the ability to create assignments, grade student work, assign standards and provide hand-written feedback to students. 

One of the key features of the app is the ability to scan and save hand-written student work, making it a great tool for managing and analyzing paper-based assignments. Using, teachers can easily scan and save hand-written student work, allowing them to create a digital archive of student work that can be easily accessed and shared. 


How GRADED+ Saves Teachers Time

By using the GRADED+ app, teachers can save time and improve the efficiency of their grading process. The platform streamlines the grading process and makes it easy to manage and analyze student work, especially hand-written assignments.

In conclusion, while digital assignments have many advantages, research shows that handwriting has significant benefits for students’ learning and development. Therefore, educators should consider incorporating more hand-written work into their lessons to help students achieve their full potential. 

By using the strategies outlined above, including the use of scanning technology such as, teachers can effectively manage and analyze hand-written student work. Further, school districts can begin the process of building a structured data set of actual student work to push educational researchers to use more concrete classroom data on student learning. 


Scanning Hand-Written Student Work with Google Classroom

Saving and organizing hand-written student work in an online gradebook presents unique challenges for teachers. Despite the increasing popularity of Google Classroom digital assignments, hand-written student work continues to play an essential role for both teachers and students. In Google Classroom, teachers have the option to select any of the following assignment types:

  • Assignments
  • Quiz assignments
  • Question
  • Material
  • Reuse post
  • Topic

Unfortunately, there is no option to select “hand-written” or “scanned” from the assignment dropdown. Google Classroom does give teachers the option to create a Doc, Slides, Sheets, Drawing or Forms. And students can easily take a picture of their hand-written work and insert it directly into a doc or slides presentation. 

Scanning Solutions for Google Classroom

However, there are some additional ways for students to scan their hand-written work into Google Classroom. In the Google Classroom mobile app, students have the option to add an attachment, and then select the phone’s camera. From there, students can select “scan pages” and the scanner does a great job of automatically cropping out any non-essential background “noise”. 

Using this feature results in a dramatically improved image for the teacher to view the student’s hand-written assignment. On the left image below, you’ll see the image taken from your typical iPhone camera. The phone camera’s image of the student work will suffice. Nevertheless, comparing the camera image to the scanned image on the right, results in a noticeable improvement in quality for both the student and teacher. 

Although this scanning feature is available within the Google Classroom app, students will likely be tempted to simply upload a photo from their phone’s camera roll. To ensure students use the scanning feature over a photo, you can play this Google Classroom GIF tutorial for them. 

Research on Hand-Written Assignments & Note Taking

From solving math problems out by hand, to writing multi-paragraph essays, physical paper assignments are the most reliable and preferable method for students to articulate and illustrate their thinking. Teachers, too, are reluctant to give up on hand-written assignments that students can complete on physical paper. Several studies have suggested that taking notes by hand can lead to better memory retention compared to typing on a computer, including:


  1. Mueller, P. A., & Oppenheimer, D. M. (2014). The pen is mightier than the keyboard: Advantages of longhand over laptop note taking. Psychological Science, 25(6), 1159-1168. 
  2. van der Meer, L., van der Weel, F. R., Lee, N. C., & van der Meijden, H. (2010). Handwriting versus keyboard writing: Effect on word recall. Journal of Writing Research, 2(2), 227-247. 
  3. Longcamp, M., Zerbato-Poudou, M. T., & Velay, J. L. (2005). The influence of writing practice on letter recognition in preschool children: A comparison between handwriting and typing. Acta Psychologica, 119(1), 67-79. 


Benefits of Hand-Written Student Work

Research certainty points to the benefits of hand-written assignments and note-taking. Teachers also intuitively know that hand-written work is unequivocally essential for early childhood development. Furthermore, digital assignments often result in more learning distractions as the internet is only a tab away. 

In an era where our attention is constantly in competition with the online world, simple pencil and paper assignments can help re-prioritize student’s focus on the assignment at hand. Journals have also had a resurgence in popularity as people are turning to time-tested strategies to maintain their fleeting focus and attention. 

Given the popularity of both Google Classroom and hand-written assignments amongst teachers, scanning will likely play a larger role in digital classroom environments for years to come. 


Other Scanning Apps

In addition to the built-in Google Classroom scanner, the following apps include a built-in scanner function. Each of these apps will improve the quality of scanned student work.

  • Google Drive | Link to instructions 
    • Open the Google Drive app Google Drive.
    • In the bottom right, tap Add Add question.
    • Tap Scan Scan.
  • Dropbox | Link to instructions
    • Open the Dropbox app 
    • Tap the + (plus) icon. 
    • Tap Scan Document. 
    • Take a picture of the content you’d like to scan
  • Apple Notes | Link to instructions
    • In a note, tap the Camera button, then tap Scan Text.
    • Position iPhone so that the text appears within the camera frame.
    • After the yellow frame appears around detected text, tap the Live Text button.
    • Drag or use grab points to select text, then tap Insert.

And then there are apps built specifically made for high quality scanning. The nytimes reviewed these apps here


A New Smart Scanner for Teachers

GRADED+ is a smart scanner designed specifically for teachers that bridges the benefits of hand-written student work with the digital capabilities of Google Classroom and Google Drive. 

Rather than students scanning their own work, the GRADED+ app provides a simple, fast and reliable way for teachers to scan an entire class in only a few minutes. 


Why shift the scanning from the student to the teacher?

Similar to how students often prefer working on physical paper, many teachers also prefer viewing student work, grading student work, and providing more thoughtful feedback directly on the student’s physical assignment. 

When using GRADED+, students write out and show all of their work on physical paper, teachers provide hand-writteen scores and feedback on the same physical paper, and the app captures everything with a single scan. Moreover, that teacher’s hand-written score, an image of the work, the rubric, and the learning standard are all saved to the Google Classroom gradebook.

More Than a Google Classroom Homework Scanner

Both students and teachers can now return to the time-tested method of hand-written classroom assignments on physical paper without ignoring the massive benefits of Google Classroom. 

GRADED+ is the smart scanner designed specifically for teachers looking to bridge the gap between hand-written student work and the important transition to digital classrooms. 

google classroom scanner