Thursday, April 6, 2023

Google Bard Overview for Educators

Google has been at the forefront of artificial intelligence research and development for many years. We have seen this work in AI-powered tools such as:
  • Google Lens - to identify the content of any image
  • Docs Voice Typing - for speech to text capabilities in Google Docs
  • Google Translate - to translate text into over 100 languages
  • AutoDraw - to identify what you draw and provide a better version
  • And so many more!
Recently Google took a major step forward by opening up access to Bard, their generative AI chatbot. This tool is similar to other products such as ChatGPT from OpenAI. In fact, ChatGPT is built on top of the Transformer technology developed by Google.

As with other Google tools, Bard has many applications and implications for schools. To help with this I have created a tutorial video and blog post where we cover:

๐Ÿ”‘ Accessing Google Bard
๐Ÿ’ฌ Using Google Bard
๐Ÿ—“️ Bard Activity History
๐ŸŽ“ Bard Examples for Educators

Check out the tutorial video and post below, and as always let me know your questions, thoughts, and ideas on this topic.

▶️ Tutorial Video (10 minutes)

▶️ Webinar Video (1 hour)

Resource Document - Feel free to also reference my resource document "AI Tools in Education" which is a perpetual work in progress as I continue to explore AI.

๐Ÿ”‘ Accessing Google Bard

You can access Google Bard at the website
  • As of this writing, Bard is still in beta so you will need to sign up with your Google account to use it.
  • Simply click the "Join waitlist" button on the welcome page.

Also, at the moment you do need to be using a personal Gmail account, and not a school-provided Google for Education account. During the beta, Bard is not yet accessible for Google Workspace accounts.

After you join the waitlist, eventually you will receive an email letting you know that you have access to Bard.

After that you can just go to to access the tool.

Now it is worth noting that Bard is still a work in progress. Google even adds a disclaimer at the bottom of the page stating "Bard may display inaccurate or offensive information that doesn’t represent Google’s views."

Having said that, in the few weeks that I have been using Bard so far, it has improved significantly. In the first few days it was common to find errors, but recently I have been very impressed with the quality and detail of the responses. And Bard will just continue to improve from here as Google continues to expand, upgrade, and refine the AI model.

๐Ÿ’ฌUsing Google Bard

To use Bard, simply type in your request in the prompt box at the bottom. Note that you can also click the microphone icon if you want to speak your prompt instead of typing it.

For example we could enter "Explain what a metaphor is and give some examples."

Bard will then generate a response for your prompt.

A nice feature of Bard is that you will actually get multiple versions of the response. If you click on the option for "View other drafts" you can now select from three different versions to find the response that best meets your needs.

Based upon the answer you get, you may want to use the buttons below the response.

You can click the thumbs up button for "Good response" or the thumbs down button for "Bad response" to send feedback to Google which will help improve the Bard AI. If you do click thumbs down, you will get the option to explain what was wrong with the answer Bard gave.

You can also click the "New response" button if you want Bard to generate a brand new set of answers.

If you want to verify the information that Bard has provided or if you just want more details, you can click the "Google it" button to get the link for a suggested Google search related to your conversation.

Finally, if you feel that your prompt wasn't worded quite right, you can click the pencil icon next to your original prompt to make any needed changes and get updated responses from Bard.

At this point you can continue your conversation with Bard by entering new prompts. Bard will remember everything that has already been discussed in this particular dialog, so you can talk to it just like you are chatting with a person.

For example we could ask a follow-up question such as "How are similes different?"

And we can keep the conversation going from there.

At any point, if there is a response that you would like to copy and use somewhere else, your have two options:
  • First you can click the 3-dots button below the response and choose "Copy". This will copy the text, but not the formatting, such as bullets and tables.
  • Or second, you can simply select the text with your mouse and then copy as normal. This will copy all of the formatting along with the text.

When you are done with this particular conversation, you can start a new one by clicking "Reset chat" in the top left corner. This will start a new session where Google Bard will not have any memory of the earlier dialog.

๐Ÿ—“️ Bard Activity History

In the future if you want to see what prompts you have entered before, you can view on the "Bard Activity" page. Simply click "Bard Activity" in the top left corner.

This will open a new window where you can scroll back through your history to see prompts you have written and feedback you have given.

At the moment this is just a view-only copy of your actions.
  • It does not include Bard's responses.
  • It does not allow you to resume these past conversations.

๐ŸŽ“ Bard Examples for Educators

Just like other generative AI chatbots, Google Bard can be used in many ways to support teaching and learning. In other videos I will cover many more uses, but for now here are just a few sample ways that Bard, or any AI chatbot, can be used for education.

Generating Assessment Questions

We can ask Bard for all sorts of assessment questions. For example we could ask: Create DOK Level 1 questions about the book "Charlotte's Web"

And of the course the same DOK 2, DOK 3, and DOK4: Create DOK Level 4 questions about the book "Charlotte's Web"

See the full text of my conversation with Bard on this topic here: Google Docs link

Writing Starters

We can ask Bard to generate writing prompts and topics for stories, essays, articles, and more. For example: Generate 10 writing prompts for a 5th grade essay on the topic of vacations.

See the full text of my conversation with Bard on this topic here: Google Docs link

Create Rubrics

We can ask Bard to generate a grading rubric to evaluate student work for a specific task and grade level. For example: Create a rubric for an 8th grade creative writing project in table format with 4 levels and 5 categories.

See the full text of my conversation with Bard on this topic here: Google Docs link

Writing Email

And for a final example we can ask Bard to help us draft an email message on a certain topic and geared toward a specific audience. For example: Write an email to school parents with suggestions to encourage student reading at home

See the full text of my conversation with Bard on this topic here: Google Docs link

There are many more ways that Bard can be used to help teachers and students. In upcoming videos we will explore a wide variety of examples.

๐Ÿ Conclusion

And that's it! Even though Google Bard is still in its early stages, it is already amazing to see how this can enhance teaching and learning right now. Tools like Bard and ChatGPT and Microsoft's Bing Chat and Canva's Magic Write and so many more will just continue to develop, and I am excited to explore and learn right alongside of you.

Feel free to check out my resource document "AI Tools in Education" at which is a perpetual work in progress as I continue to explore AI.

Post by Eric Curts
๐Ÿ“ฎ Join the "Control Alt achieve" email discussion group
๐Ÿ’ฌ Join the "Control Alt Achieve" Facebook group -
๐Ÿ”” Get new blog posts automatically through email - FollowIt link
๐Ÿ“ฐ Sign up for my email newsletter
๐Ÿฆ Connect on socials: Threads - Twitter - Facebook - LinkedIn - Instagram - Mastodon - Bluesky
▶️ Subscribe to my YouTube channel
๐Ÿ“ง Reach out through email -
๐Ÿ“— Check out my "Control Alt Achieve" book
๐Ÿ”— See my "EdTech Links of the Week" -
๐Ÿซ Bring me to your school, organization, or conference with over 70 PD sessions to choose from

No comments:

Post a Comment