eSignatures and How Teachers Can Benefit from Them

What Are eSignatures?

eSignatures have been used for around 20 years–and in some countries have been a legal form of identification and agreement for the same amount of time, but they’ve become much more widely used during recent years. They are essentially exactly as the name suggests: signatures that are electronic. This could mean that they were created electronically or just shared electronically. There are many possibilities as to what caused their rise in popularity. To start, eSignatures don’t require printing and posting/scanning signed documents which means saving on time, money on equipment or shipping, as well as reducing paper-waste.

Which Tool to Use

To find an eSignature tool to use, all you have to do is a quick Google search, as there are so many available online. However, you will get a lot of results for high-priced tools that require you to download and sign-up for their services. One of the best eSign tools is Smallpdf, because it’s easy to use and doesn’t require any subscriptions (which means it’s free) and it’s available completely online (so nothing to download).

Step by Step Guide

  • Go to Smallpdf’s toolpage, and select their PDF eSign tool.
  • Upload your request form, contract or any other PDF you have that needs signing.
  • Click on the right-hand side where it says ‘Your signature’ or ‘Your initials’, depending on your need.
  • Draw, type or upload an image of your signature within the pop-up, and click ‘Create’.
  • It will now appear on the right-hand side, and from there you can drag and drop it anywhere onto the page.
  • If that’s all you needed to do, you can finish by clicking on ‘Finish and sign’.
  • Or if you have, or want to subscribe to, a paid account, you can add additional signers (you can currently get a free trial for up to a week).
  • To do that, click on ‘Invite signers’ which will open another pop-up, where you can add as many signers as you need, by adding their name and email address.
  • When you’ve added everyone you need to, hit ‘Continue’.
  • If you need them to sign in a specific place, click where you want them to sign, click on ‘A.B’ and select the correct signer.
  • Finish by clicking ‘Review and send’, which will send the sign request directly to their email inbox with a link, which will take them to the same signing tool.
  • You will then be able to track all of your signature requests in your Smallpdf account until they are sent back to you.

This was an extremely detailed how-to, and the process is a lot easier and faster than it may sound – check it out and see for yourself. Also Read – How Can ICAS Assessment Improve the Career Prospects For Your Students

Use Cases

There’s a long list of when teachers and educators have papers to sign, and with the busy schedule that comes with the job, you don’t want to spend precious time printing out a document, signing and scanning it again to send it.

This is what makes digital signature tools so beneficial within the education sector. You can use electronic signatures within your team, for example if you are out for the day and you have a substitute teacher who requires your signature for something, or if you work in the administrative department and work with signatures on a daily basis. Additionally, they’re great for requesting signatures from parents, such as permission slips for off-campus trips, as well as getting admission and application forms signed by prospective students or parents.

Final Thoughts

Regardless of which online signature tool you opt to use, they will be a huge asset to you as a teacher and your students’ parents will benefit from the improved and sped-up signing process. Whether you require consent forms for school trips to be signed by parents, admission forms to be filled out and signed by potential parents, or even if you’re signing your work contract, electronic signature tools like Smallpdf’s make the whole process a lot more straightforward and saves everyone involved time, money and effort.