Tech Tips & Tricks

Google Apps - Force Copy


The term force copy refers to the ability to share a link to a Google file that automatically triggers a copy of the file when the link is clicked. This allows instructors to share a copy of a file that may be edited by students. For example, if you wanted to share a Google doc that included discussion prompts with students, you could use the force copy link to ensure that each student receives a copy of the questions that may complete individually.

  • Open Google File. Navigate to the file that you wish to share and click the file to open.

  • Sharing Settings. Click the Share button to open the sharing settings. If the recipients are intended to add or change the original file, the permissions must be updated from Viewer to Editor. For example, if each student is intended to write their own responses within a copy of a google doc, the permission will need to be updated to Editor prior to copy the sharing link.

  • Copy Link. Click the Copy Link text to copy the URL to the clipboard.

  • Force Copy. To create a force copy link, add /copy to the end of the URL. Paste the copied link to the designation location and add /copy to the end of the URL. See the URLs below for an example of where to add the /copy text:

      • Original URL (Example):

      • Remove Text (Example):
        Delete everything after the last slash

      • Add copy after the last slash (Example):