Google Groups allows for archiving and management of mailing lists, and provides services for communication and collaboration with Group members.
Groups also offers generous storage limits and unique group management options.
Specific features include:
- Directory Listing of Groups: Group managers can determine if a Group is private, or listed publicly within Connecticut College.
- Group Role Management: Group managers can moderate messages, specify to whom replies are sent, activate a Group’s discussion archive, and allow people outside Connecticut College to send messages to their Groups.
- Membership Management: Members can easily manage their Group memberships. For example, they can choose the type of subscription they want, including full email, abridged email, digest email, or no email. Members can also unsubscribe from any Group.
- Discussion Archives: All messages sent to a group can be archived on a Discussion page, so members always have quick access to important past communications. Members can also post messages directly on the Discussion page.
- Group and Message Search: You can quickly find existing public groups to join, and view public discussion archives. Group members can search for specific messages across all public Groups.
This implementation of Google Groups for Google Apps for Education works best with Google Sites and Google Docs to replicate the “Pages” and file-upload features found in the consumer version of Google Groups.
When Is a Google Group Better Than an Email Account?
If you have a group of people who need to post messages to everyone else in that group, use a Google Group so that messages can be sent to just the Google Group address which will then be delivered to everyone who is a member of that group, instead of having everyone try to keep their own up-to-date version of the distribution list. Also, people will be able to remove themselves from the group if they no longer wish to receive messages, or they can change the way they receive messages. The default is for every message to be sent as an individual message as it is received, but options include having each day's messages delivered as a single message, or not receiving email messages at all an instead viewing the messages on the group's web page where all messages for that group are archived.
How to Use Google Groups
Google Groups can be accessed by choosing Groups at the top-left of the screen after you log in to Google Apps. Then, on the Groups page, click Sign-in at top-right.