Teacher Tech blog with Alice Keeler

Paperless Is Not a Pedagogy

Alice Keeler

Managing Email from Google Plus Communities

Old Gmail icon for G Suite Challenges
Managing Email from Google Plus Communities

I use Google Plus Communities with the college students that I teach. The Google Plus Community can generate a lot of email for students. This can be managed. While you can turn off email notifications, I would recommend you set up Priority Inbox instead.

Priority Inbox

In Gmail hover over the word “Inbox.” This will reveal a small drop down arrow.

Hover over "Inbox"


Choose Priority Inbox

Choose Priority Inbox from the list. This will sort your email from important and unimportant.

Priority Inbox



Forum Posts at the Bottom

Priority Inbox puts the forum posts at the bottom.



Train Gmail

Yellow flags to the left of the Gmail sender indicates if the email is important. Click on the yellow flags to mark them unimportant. Click on the white flags to mark them important. You will train Gmail to know which emails are and are not important. The unimportant ones will sink to the bottom.



Filter Email

You can also filter your email. Filtering allows you to have automatic actions taken on certain emails based on criteria you set.

Star Instructor Email

I recommend to the students to set a filter that any email or notification sent by the instructor is automatically marked important and starred.

Label Forum Posts

If you do not want to see the forum posts in your inbox you can choose to have them automatically be labeled and to skip the inbox. You would then check the “folder” with that label periodically to see the forum posts.


To create a filter check the checkbox to the left of the email that is of the style you wish to filter. This will reveal buttons along the top for you to choose from. Click on the “More” button and choose “Filter messages like these.”


Filter Criteria

By default Gmail thinks you want to filter emails from the email address of the sender. Delete out the email address if this is not how you want to set your filter.



Filter Subject

When using Google Plus Communities each email generated starts with brackets and the name of the community. Since this will be in all Google Plus Community emails type the name, including brackets, into the “Subject” area of the filter details. Click on “Create filter with this search.”



Choose Actions

What do you want to have happen to the emails? The filter gives you several options for what happens when an email with the filter criteria comes in. I would recommend choosing “Never mark it as important” and to “Apply the label:” where you make a label for these types of emails. You may want to choose to have it “Skip the Inbox,” but make sure you apply a label to it also if you choose that option. You may also want to “Categorize as:” “Forums.” Click “Create filter.”



Turn Off Notifications

If you still want to turn off email notifications, go to the Google Plus Community. Underneath the Community title and description is a red bell indicating that notifications are turned on. Click on this bell to turn the notifications off.

Turn off Notifications


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