Google Calendar

Overview

Google calendar is an online calendar that you can use to keep track of recurring events (like classes), and important dates (like tests), as well as get reminders about upcoming activities.

Features

The following core capabilities are included in Google Calendar:

  • Multiple Calendars: Everyone has a primary Google Calendar; however, you can create additional calendars for different purposes. Have one for classes, one of personal events, etc.
  • Schedule Meeting: If you've ever tried to arrange a meeting with several people that have busy schedules, you can recall the challenge it is to try and figure out a time when everyone is available. Google Calendar has two features that can assist you: Suggested Times, or Find a time. While these features can be very helpful, remember that if you're scheduling with people outside of the University of Alaska, or for HIPAA reasons people at university that are using Microsoft Exchange, you may not be able to see the availability of everyone.
  • Hide Event Details: By default people only see your calendar's free/busy information; however, if you have shared your calendar with one or more individuals you might have times when you hide details about specific events from others. Mark a meeting a Private and everyone, except you, will simply see that you're busy. Even the people you've shared you calendar with.
  • Attachments: When sending calendar invitations you can send links to relevant documents and materials appropriate to the event.
  • Define a location: When creating a meeting event you can specific a specific location to meet. This can either be a physical address, or descriptive information so your participants know where to go. See the FAQ below for additional details.
  • Share your Calendar: You can control who sees your calendar, what they see, and whether they have permissions to edit it. You can also make your calendar public if you desire. By default everyone within the University of Alaska can only see if you're free/busy, they are unable to see specific details of the events on your calendar unless you choose to change the permissions.
  • Create Reminders: When you need to remember something on your to-do list you can create a personal reminder.

 

Help Resources

 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Does Google Calendar have event reminders?
    Yes, Calendar has event notifications and personal reminders. You can set up an email notification for an event or create a reminder to send you a notification.
  • Can I send a meeting invitation to people outside the University of Alaska?
    Yes, you can send meeting invitations to any email address.
  • Can I add an attachment to my Calendar invitation?

    You can link documents, spreadsheets, and other files directly to an event so your participants have access to the information right from the event.

    However, Google does not send the files as an attachment to the calendar invitation. Instead it stores the files in your Google Drive. Your meeting participants do not automatically have permissions to view your attachments. You must give your event participants access to the files by sharing each file from Google Drive.

    If you've invited people to the event and they do not have access to view the file, you'll be asked to chose one of the following sharing options when you save the event:

    • Anyone with the link can view, comment, or edit: Anyone who has the link can access the file. Guests can share the file with someone else, and they won't need a Google Account to see it.
    • Guests of this event can view, comment, or edit: Shares the file with your guests. They need a Google Account to see the file. They can only share the file with someone else if you give them "Can edit" access.
    • Save without sharing: Guests who don't have access will see the title of the file, but they won't be able to open it.

    You can also open the file in Google Drive for other sharing options.

  • Can I view other calendars?
    Yes. Google Calendar use the industry standard iCal format. You can add any iCal calendar that you have permission to access, either other individuals at the University of Alaska, or other external calendars. The calendar will appear on the left side under Other Calendars.
  • Can I share my calendar with other people?

    You can share your Google calendar (ideally your primary calendar) with others and designate the level of access from view only to full access. To share your calendar do the following:

    • From Google click the Gear icon in the upper right.
    • Click Settings.
    • Click the Calendars tab.
    • Click Shared: Edit settings.
    • Enter the person's email address (e.g. username@alaska.edu), Select the permission setting.
    • Click Add Person.
    • Please also review the Share this calender with others setting.
    • Click Save.
  • What access do people that I share my Google Calendar with have?

    When you share your Google Calendar with someone they become what is referred to as a delegate.

    Below are what delegates can do with each sharing option:

    Make changes AND manage sharing

    • Change sharing settings
    • Add and edit events
    • See details for all events, including private ones
    • See the time zone setting for the calendar
    • Permanently delete the calendar
    • Restore or permanently delete events from the calendar's Trash

    Make changes to events

    • Add and edit events
    • See details for all events, including private ones
    • See the time zone setting for the calendar
    • Restore or permanently delete events from the calendar's Trash

    See all event details

    • See details for all events except those marked as private
    • See the time zone setting for the calendar

    See free/busy information (no details)

    • See when your calendar is booked and when it has free time, but not the names or other details of your events.

    Regardless of which sharing option is selected, delegates can't do the following:

    • Change your Calendar account settings, such as language, time zone, or automatically adding invitations to your calendar.
    • Access your contacts when inviting guests to events (your delegate can access your contacts via delegated Gmail).
    • Use Tasks lists in your Calendar account.

    Note: Events from Gmail that have the "Only me" visibility setting aren't visible to anyone you've shared your calendar with, even people with "Make changes" access, unless you change the sharing setting for the vent or the default setting for events from Gmail.

  • Why when I click on the map link next to the Where in a Google Calendar event does it display a location other than what I expect?

    When creating a calendar event with a value entered in the Where field that does not contain the correct latitude/longitude reference for the actual location Google attempts to map the location based on the name of the location entered. This often times results in the Google Maps view displaying a location somewhere other than actually desired. Depending upon the value entered in the Where field the map location could be in another city, state, or even country.

    If you want to ensure that the Google Map location pin for a Google Calender event displays the correct location you will need to be verify specific about the format of your Where line so that it is listed as Location Name, Street Address, City State Zip code. Below is an example:

    The Drowsy Wolf Cafe, 2901 Spirit Way, Anchorage AK 99508

    However, even when being this specific there is a chance that when clicking on the Map link in the event there may be a result list that shows more than one item based on similarities to the Location Name provided. The location pin is usually displayed correctly based on the address provided.

    To restrict the result list to almost always the actual desired location you must enter the event's location in the format of Location Name@Latitude,Longitude. Below is an example:

    UAA IT Services@61.190616,-149.819666

    There are many sites that can provide you with the latitude and longitude for a location one of which is http://itouchmap.com/latlong.html. Alternatively you can find your location manually in Google Maps. Once you've found the location right-click and select What's Here? A dialog window will appear at the bottom of the Google Map with information regarding the physical address as well as the latitude and longitude.

  • Why does my Calendar event, with "no end date" specified, suddenly end?

    Recurring calendar events going missing usually occur when you create, or someone else sends you, a meeting that is scheduled to repeat on a set pattern that goes on either indiffently, or a large number of occurrences.

    Currently, Google Calendar limits recurring events to have a maximum of 730 occurrences in the series. Unfortunetly, Google doesn't do a very good job of communicating this limitation in the UI. There are three (3) options for a recurring series end date:

    • Never
    • On < Date>
    • After <Num> occurrences

     

    If an recurring event is created where it is selected to end either Never, or enter a number of occurrences greater than 730, or a specific end date is selected that, based upon your recurrence pattern, would put the number of occurrences above 730, Calendar does not provide any indication that you've exceeded it's maximum allowed event recurrence. Instead it simply accepts your input and creates the event series; however, once it creates the 730th event in the series it stops.

    Unless you happen to remember this limitation when creating, or accepting, the meeting you may be unpleasantly surprised sometime down the road to find a meeting suddenly missing from your calendar. How long this takes depends upon the frequency of the event. For example: a meeting that takes place every week day would have about 260 (±) occurrences in a single year. This means you would have to look out on your calendar 2 years, 9 months, 20 days (± a day or so) before you noticed the meeting is missing from your calendar.

    There are few workarounds to this issue:

    • Create a new copy of your recurring event, starting the week after the previous event last appeared on your calendar.
    • If you're not concerned about keeping the event's history (e.g. which days a meeting was rescheduled, canceled, etc.), you can simply change the start date of your existing event to a later date.

    When creating recurring events that should have no end date we recommend the following practice to avoid any issues with meeting events suddenly missing.

    1. Create the recurring meeting, adding attendees, and other information
    2. Define an end date one or two years out. (e.g. start date: 1/16/2019, end date: 12/31/2020)
    3. Send the meeting invite.
    4. When the exising meeting comes close to its scheduled end date, create a new meeting that starts after the original one ends with a new end date (e.g. start date 1/1/2021, end date: 12/31/2022).

    Use this as an oppertunity to update the meeting participants to reflect any changes in the attendees.

  • How do I set out-of-office dates on my calendar?

    If you're out of the office, you can update your calendar so colleagues know you're away from work.

    1. Login to your UA G Suite account.
    2. Select the Calendar app.
    3. In your calendar grid, click the first day that you're away from work.
    4. Click Out of office, and select a time period.
    5. (Optional) To explain you're away from work, enter a message in the Decline message section
    6. In the Visibility section, choose an option:
      • Public
      • Default visibility
      • Private
    7. Click Save.

    Any new, and existing meetings during this time will be automatically declined.

 

Need additional help or have issues

For additional assistance contact the IT Services Technical Support Center via phone at (907) 786-4646, toll-free at (877) 633-3888, or email at uaa.techsupport@alaska.edu.