Internet Productivity

How to Use Google Calendar for School: Organize Your Class Schedule

Sandy Writtenhouse Updated 18-05-2020

One of the most difficult parts of college, besides the homework, of course, is managing a complex and ever-changing schedule. Between classes, extracurricular activities, and a part-time job, you are extremely busy.

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An excellent way to start your semester off or even organize it partway is to leverage free tools to help you manage everything on your plate. In this article, you’ll see how to manage your class schedule and get organized for the semester with Google Calendar.

Get Your Schedules and Mark Important Dates

Before you can get organized with Google Calendar, you need to get all your schedules together. Start by locating an official copy of your semester course schedule. You also want schedules for any extracurricular activities, work, or events you plan to participate in during the term.

Get as much information as you can for each of your events to make your schedule as robust as possible. This includes dates, durations, locations, required textbooks, and even teachers. Don’t be afraid to include too much information in this step because you can always remove it later.

And for additional tools, check out these checklist and planner templates just for students 15 Checklist, Schedule, and Planner Templates for Students Planning templates for students can help keep track of classes and homework, making preparations for the school year a breeze. Read More .

How to Make a Class Schedule Calendar

Head to Google Calendar, sign in, and start by creating a specific calendar to hold your class schedule. Using an individual calendar gives you the option of toggling it on or off, which can be handy if you have a lot of events.

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  1. Click the Main Menu button on the top left if your sidebar is hidden.
  2. Go to Other calendars, click the plus sign, and select Create New Calendar.
  3. Give your calendar a Name, Description, and optionally choose a different Time Zone if needed.
  4. Click Create Calendar.

Google Calendar Create Calendar

When you click the arrow on the top left, you’ll be back on your main calendar page and should see your new calendar in the sidebar. If you want to change the color, click the Options button (three-dots) that appears when you move your cursor over the calendar. Then pick a new color from the palette.

Google Calendar Change Color

How to Add Classes to Google Calendar

The next step is to add your classes to Google Calendar. Head to a date on the calendar when your first class begins and click. This will open the new event window.

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Start from the top and add the course Title, choose Event, and then add the start and end times with the Add Time button.

You likely won’t use the Add guests or Add Google Meet options, but you may want to include your school’s Location and add a Description to contain your instructor’s name, the room number, and other pertinent details for the class.

Be sure to choose your class schedule calendar from the dropdown list and then click Save.

Google Calendar New Class Event

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Alternatively, you can choose More Options to customize your class event further with the options below. Or you can hit Save now and customize it later by clicking the event on your calendar and selecting Edit Event.

Make Your Classes Repeat

Since your classes will occur regularly, you’ll want to make this a repeating event.

At the top, below the class title, you’ll see Does not repeat. Click that dropdown box and you’ll see some quick options you can pick from like Daily and Weekly on [specific day]. If one of these applies, go ahead and select it but if not, click Custom.

Now you can pick the exact days that this class repeats each week. And at the bottom, you can enter an end date, so the class will stop showing up on your calendar when that day comes.

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Google Calendar Repeat Class Event

Click Save when you finish.

Keep adding calendar events and customizing them until your schedule is complete. Don’t forget to include things like your extracurricular activities or work schedule.

Set Up Google Calendar Notifications

A terrific feature of Google Calendar is its notifications. This helps you remember you have a class at a certain time, so you won’t forget, and you won’t (or shouldn’t) be late. You can create notifications for individual class events or for the entire school calendar.

Set Up Event Notifications

If you want to set up different notifications depending on when the class occurs, you can create individual event notifications. Select the event on your calendar and click Edit Event.

On the event detail page, click Add Notification. Select either Notification or Email in the first dropdown box, depending on how you want to receive your alert. Then choose how far in advance of your class you’d like to be notified.

You can add more than one notification too. For example, you can receive an alert one hour before your class starts and another 10 minutes before the start time. Just click Add Notification for each additional alert you’d like to create.

Google Calendar Event Notification

Click Save if you’re finished. You’ll see a popup message asking if you want to change only that event or the others you created for that repeating class. You’ll likely choose the second option for This and following events so that you’ll receive the notification for that class each time. Click OK.

Set Up Calendar Notifications

If you would rather create notifications for your entire school calendar, this is just as simple. And this way, you’ll receive a notification for any event on your calendar, whether a class, activity, or work shift.

Click the Options button next to the calendar and pick Settings and Sharing. Scroll down and you’ll see a few sections for Event Notifications, All-Day Event Notifications, and Other Notifications.

For Event and All-Day Notifications, click Add Notification, choose Notification or Email, and enter the timing for the alert. You can add more than one by clicking Add Notification.

Google Calendar Event and All Day Notifications

For Other Notifications, you can simply choose to receive an email to your connected Gmail account for each of the items listed such as new events, canceled events, or your daily agenda.

Google Calendar Other Notifications

Access Google Calendar On-The-Go

You can always access your calendar from any web browser. But if you’re out and about, you can check out your class schedule in the Google Calendar app on your mobile device.

The Google Calendar app on Android and iOS lets you view and edit your schedule and classes easily. And best of all, it’s available for free.

In addition, you can add attachments. So if you need a paper you wrote for a class, you can attach it to that class event in the app.

Download: Google Calendar for Android | iOS (Free)

Organize Your Semester With a Google Calendar Class Schedule

Although it takes a little time to put it all together, having your school schedule online and on your devices can be a great asset throughout your semester.

For more, here are several free calendars you can add to your Google Calendar and various ways to make Google Calendar your Windows desktop calendar 7 Ways to Make Google Calendar Your Windows Desktop Calendar Yes, Google Calendar can be your desktop calendar. We show you how to view Google Calendar directly on your Windows desktop. Read More .

Image Credit: Evan Wondrasek/Flickr

Related topics: Calendar, Education Technology, Google Calendar, Students, Study Tips.

Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.

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  1. SAIMADHAV YV
    August 14, 2017 at 3:49 pm

    I am a teacher and I want to have a time table or a schedule of my classes in Mac & in Android.

  2. omkar sahu
    August 6, 2017 at 9:32 am

    i am reading this in 2017, still useful.
    thanks so much

  3. us here
    December 17, 2016 at 2:18 pm

    Your grasp of this topic is wonderful. It genuinely touched base to me and I am glad I discovered this material. Thank you really significantly.

    find

  4. AriesWarlock
    January 30, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    I have tried synchronizing my google calendar with gmail, but my events do not appear in gmail.

    • Evan Wondrasek
      February 1, 2010 at 1:15 pm

      If you've added the Google Calendar Gadget to Gmail, try clicking Options (just under the calendar gadget) then 'Edit visible calendars' and verify your calendar is enabled.

      Hope that helps!

  5. Del-vett Bob
    January 25, 2010 at 1:07 pm

    You didn't mention WebOs for the Palm Pre. It syncs w/Google Calender over the Web.

    I can make an entry in my dentist's office for my next appointment and by the time I get home I can access it on my laptop. It syncs the other way also (from my laptop to my phone) over the web.

    No cables, no bluetooth.

  6. holden caulfield
    January 24, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    *Disbursed, not dispersed.

  7. bonnie
    January 20, 2010 at 2:11 pm

    forgot to mention...I'd LOVE it if Google Calendar would allow you to repeat events on specific days like iCal...not just MWF or T/TH. I have classes that are Mon/Thurs, Mon/Fri, etc. right now my only work around is to create on on mondays that repeats weekly and then another on thursday that repeats weekly...not tragic, but its presumptuous to think that those are the only way things repeat. on iCal you can select any combination of days and have it repeat weekly, monthly, 2nd friday, 3rd tuesday, whatever you want.

  8. Bonnie
    January 20, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    I'm on a MAC and was using ical, switching over was a little buggy but I worked it out. I have 9 different calendars. I too am a college student after being out of the classroom for over 20 years. I also student teach and have an 8 year old, am a girl scout leader and maintain a pretty active family life with a lot of sports.

    I have a calendar named 'school' with all my classes, and include student teaching. I did everything you did, and when I rec'd my syllabi I easily entered my exams and papers and even set up reminders at appropriate intervals ahead of time. When I was working on my thesis last semester, I met with my mentor every week but I also put in reminders in the same calendar to write 2 - 3 pages by the end of each week, when to start on my Works Cited page, when to edit previous work, etc. It was a lifesaver.

    I also have another calendar for my daughter and anything for her, including sports, scouts, field trips, etc. I can easily see when she needs a bag lunch, when cookie order forms are due, her tournament schedules, etc. She's almost 9 and I just got her using it, so now I 'invite' her to all of her events so they are automatically on her calendar.

    I have another calendar for 'household' that I use to keep a schedule of home and car maintenance, even down to reminders to take trash out so we're not chasing the garbage men down the street. The day each event shows up I can delegate the task to me, my husband or my daughter.

    Another one is for Girl Scouts, and I have a 'Personal' one for doctor appointments, social activities, etc. I also recently created a "What's For Dinner" calendar that repeats every day. I try to map out what we're having for dinner in advance to take advantage of leftovers and that 6 pm daiy panic of not having anything defrosted and relying on fast food.

    Lastly, I have one for bills...I put in a recurring date when things are due.

    I tried the google tasks, but it wasn't 'complex' enough for me. I'm a dedicated Remember the Milk user, and fortunately you can easily synch it to google calendar so my tasks pop up every day in my calendar.

    I access everything on my Droid. Love it.

    • Evan Wondrasek
      January 20, 2010 at 2:13 pm

      WOW, that is impressive! I bow to your organization skills.

      I agree about Google Tasks- I tried it for a few weeks and really had a hard time actually *using* it. I kept it up to date just fine, but the fact that it can only really be used from Gmail really held me back.

      I'm an avid Remember The Milk user and I use the Android app called Astrid to use it on my Droid :)

  9. jollyrogue
    January 20, 2010 at 12:22 pm

    heh, i never actually thought to put my college timetable onto my google calendar. So now i have it done and synced to my Hero :) awesome info.

    • Evan Wondrasek
      January 20, 2010 at 12:59 pm

      I know what you mean! This was the first semester I started doing it - I can't believe it took this long for how "connected" I think I am.

      I have mine synced to my Droid and use the CalWidget app to display it on my desktop, it's made a huge improvement this semester already.

      I'm currently working on Part II of this article which is about staying on top of your tests and assignments with online tools.

  10. Marcelle
    January 20, 2010 at 9:04 am

    I passed this on to my nephew who is a freshman in college. He can really use this! Also showed it to my high school daughter. I will be posting a link to on it on my facebook. Great use of google calendar!

  11. Drew
    January 20, 2010 at 7:56 am

    Also, try to convince your professors to create their own GCal that you can subscribe to in your own account.
    This way, if there are changes to locations or times, etc, you will be notified automagically.

  12. Jim Keplinger
    January 20, 2010 at 6:07 am

    I returned to school this semester for the first time in 20 years and immediately populated GCal with all my class work, building locations, instructors names, and more. It has been saving my bacon daily as I try to remember where this hall is from that hall etc. The reminders also get me out of the gym in time to make it to class. GREAT STUFF!

  13. jo cam
    January 19, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    I like google calendar but it is not ideal. There is so much more I need. It is not able to schedule something that repeats on a certain day of each month. It is difficult to sttach media files to certain events. The colors are lame.

    I use the attach a document tool, but I would really like to attach thumbnails of my documents to certain dates. In this visual world, a bunch of text links is just repelling to my sense of organization. It seems like it should be great, but I never really felt comfortable with it.

    • jo cam
      January 19, 2010 at 9:32 pm

      I forgot to mention, Pocketmod is a much better tool for those of us that need tangible reminders. Lists, the first sign of madness.....

    • Evan Wondrasek
      January 19, 2010 at 9:56 pm

      Hello,

      To make an event repeat on a certain day of each month, create a new event on the date you would like the event to begin, then click the 'Repeat...' button the same as this article, select 'Monthly' and choose either day of the month or day of the week.

      Hope that helps!