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My name is Claudia and I'm a teacher who helps parents with their kids remote and distance learning as well as well as how kids can best learn online and with technology!


What is the difference between 'handed in' and 'turned in' in Google Classroom?

Updated: Apr 18, 2021

As always, I'm here to help with any questions floating around regarding online learning and today I have come across many of you asking about what exactly 'handed in' and 'turned in' mean when using Google Classroom. In this post, we will find out how to hand in and turn in work on the popular online learning platform Google Classroom and whether the two are in fact the same thing. I spent some time exploring and trying it out myself on Google Classroom so that I could put together the facts and hopefully answer your questions here.

'Turned in' meaning in Google Classroom

Sometimes teachers will set assignments on Google Classroom which do not require students to upload or attach their own individual file or document in their submission. In these cases, students have the 'Mark as done' option to the right of the assignment information and once clicked and confirmed, the status of the assignment changes to 'turned in'. (see below)

what does turned in mean in Google Classroom

It is then worth noting that once assignments are 'turned in' in this way, they appear as 'handed in' from the teacher's view on Google Classroom. This could be where some of the confusion comes from about the two terms and whether or not they mean the same thing.

what does handed in mean in Google Classroom

I did some further testing in Google Classroom and set an assignment where students were required to attach a Google Doc before submitting their work. The process was very similar and again, once the student marked the assignment as done using the blue button (after hopefully having attached their document), the assignment was then labelled 'turned in' from the students perspective.

what does turned in mean in Google Classroom

And then, having switched back over to my teacher account, the assignment that had been marked 'turned in' by the student above was now listed as 'handed in' in the student work area in the teacher's view.

what does handed in mean in google classroom

'Handed in' meaning on Google Classroom

As we have seen so far, when it comes to assignments on Google Classroom, there are different terms used depending on whether you are a student or a teacher. I have noticed that once students submit an assignment by pressing the 'mark as done' button, the assignment shows up as 'turned in' for them. On the other hand, when their teacher logs into Google Classroom and opens the student work area, they will see the same 'turned in' assignment listed as 'handed in'.

I did one last trial run with a quiz assignment, just to check if anything was different in terms of where and when 'handed in' and 'turned in' appear for students and teachers using Google Classroom. I set a quiz assignment that required students to answer a one-question Google Forms quiz. (see below)

what is the difference between turned in and handed in on google classroom

One thing I did notice in this final test was that as a student, once you complete the Google Forms quiz that is attached to the quiz assignment by the teacher, your Google Classroom assignment is automatically set as 'turned in' and you will see 'turned in' appear without having to click on the 'Mark as done' button. (see below)

what does turned in mean on google classroom?

As before, once 'turned in' this assignment was then displayed as 'handed in' from the point of view of the teacher.

Difference between 'handed in' and 'turned in' in Google Classroom

Through testing different kinds of assignments and switching back and forth between a teacher and their student's view of Google Classroom we have found out that 'handed in' is simply the equivalent term shown on the teacher's Google Classroom and that 'turned in' on the student's Google Classroom means exactly the same thing.

Is 'handed in' and 'turned in' same in Google Classroom?

Yes. The difference is that Google Classroom assignments that have been submitted are displayed with slightly different wording to students as they are to teachers - students see them listed as 'turned in' whereas teachers will see submitted assignments listed as 'handed in'. They mean the exact same thing.


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