Dog eating homework!
Four simple (free) techniques to consider as a "back up" plan for your valuable homework, grades, course information, etc.

  1. Save copies of valuable homework and grades to your (login required) cloud apps like Google Drive!
    1. No more "dog ate my homework"!
    2. Teachers and students should be using cloud repositories like Google Drive
  2. Backup Google Drive files to your computer - Saving work to "the cloud (online)" is not fail-safe. How much redundancy you want/need to manage is a personal decision. I personally keep copies of grades and work I want to backup in the cloud (on Google Drive) and on my computer's hard drive, locally.
  3. Take Screenshots of your Online Work. And, if needed, use OCR (Optical Character Recognition) -- it's built into Google Drive. Or your favorite photo editing software to edit scanned files. Your application choices depend upon what you're trying to save and use.
  4. Keep (just a few) good, old fashioned print outs of critical documents - still a worthwhile strategy. However, please try to keep this task to a minimum to save the trees and all, right? ;)

Three more important notes ... 

       * Using a thumb-drive as a "back up" device has become a bad idea for many...

Over the years countless faculty and students come to us in a panic after their thumb-drive with "their world" on it has been dropped in puddle, slammed in door, stolen or lost, left behind plugged into machines no longer accessible, corrupted by the machine they plugged into -- and don't get us started on the viruses they pick up - it's like sharing a tongue depressor.  As you can tell we're no fan of the thumb-drive as a "back up drive" these days.  Rather than using a thumb-drive, choose a cloud application (even your email) as a safer transportation and/or backup plan for your important files, whenever possible.

         * Special note to all college employees ... 

Always keep in mind current FERPA guidelines when making decisions about backing up any sensitive college work. 

         * Research the MANY ways you can "back up" your personal computer, as well! 

Don't wait for something to happen to your good work --- devise and implement a back up plan today.  And, if you have the time, please share your "No-Drama-Care" strategies on South Student Lounge discussion forum.

Virtually yours,
Sara Newman ~ South Seattle College
eLearning, STARS and TLC Director