Teaching scientific software online
CoCalc is a virtual online computer lab: it takes away the pain of teaching scientific software!

An entire computer lab in the cloud

  • Every student works 100% online – inside their own, isolated workspace.
  • Follow the progress of each student in real-time
  • At any time you can jump into a file of a student, right where they are working.
  • Use TimeTravel to see each step a student took to get to the solution.
  • Integrated chat rooms allows you to guide students directly where they work or discuss collected files with your teaching assistants.
  • The project's Activity Log records exactly when and by whom a file was accessed.

No software setup 100% online

Common underlying software environment:

  • Forget any complicated software setup – everyone is able to start working in seconds!
  • Since everyone works with exactly the same software stack, any inconsistencies between your and your students' environments are eliminated.

More about CoCalc's Software Environment

Manage all files

The course management interface gives you full control over distributing, collecting, grading and returning everyone's assignments.

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NBGrader support

CoCalc's Jupyter Notebooks fully support automatic and manual grading!
The teacher's notebook contains exercise cells for students and test cells, some of which students can also run to get immediate feedback. Once collected, you tell CoCalc to automatically run the full test suite across all student notebooks and tabulate the results.
Learn more about NBGrader in CoCalc.

Available tools

Jupyter Notebooks

CoCalc's own Jupyter Notebook implementation offers real-time synchronization, time-travel, automatic grading, side-chat, and more.

Sage Worksheets

Sage Worksheets are similar to Jupyter Notebooks, but made to work well with SageMath.

LaTeX Editor

A full LaTeX editor supporting preview rendering, forward/inverse search, error reporting, and more.

Linux Terminal

Access all powerful tools in a full Linux environment.


I just found out that my CoCalc class got by far the best course evaluations for any course I've taught at UCSD to date (over 85% on the favorable/­unfavorable scale), which makes it a sure thing that I'll be teaching this course again (in some form) next year! Many thanks for the backend work on CoCalc, for the course materials, for the guest lecture...

Kiran Kedlaya — UC San Diego, March 2017

CoCalc provides a user-friendly interface. Students don't need to install any software at all. They just open up a web browser and go to https://cocalc.com and that's it. They just type code directly in, hit shift+enter and it runs, and they can see if it works. It provides immediate feedback. The course management features work really well.

Will Conley — Math professor, University of California at Los Angeles, Fall 2016

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