A few months ago, Microsoft added a new question type in Microsoft Forms. It is the File Upload. This enables you to ask respondents to upload files like screenshots, PowerPoints, Word documents or even audio or video recordings as their response. Welcome to Day 97 of 365 Ideas for Office 365– file upload in Forms.
Google, I mean Microsoft Forms
I’ll go ahead and start with “It’s about time”. Google Forms had this feature a couple years before Microsoft figured this one out. It used to be when I’d have a conversation about the two platforms, we’d all agree Google Forms had so many more question types they couldn’t compare. Then that conversation evolved into, yes, but Microsoft Forms has Immersive Reader and it’s so much easier to use branching in Microsoft Forms than Google Forms. Now with file upload Microsoft has almost caught up to Google on questions types.
The idea of file upload questions is to be able to collect more meaningful and authentic assessments than traditional test question types. Within a larger Form with more questions, it can be used to offer supporting documentation or as an alternate means of assessment. In other words, ask your traditional multiple choice or, more likely, open-ended question, but follow that up with an alternative format question that asks the student to share their learning on that concept in ways that don’t require writing out their response.
Or, let’s take that a step further. Since branching is so easy in Microsoft Forms, question 2 could ask if the student would rather write an answer or upload a file (an original audio or video recording or PowerPoint, etc.) that answers the question. Depending on the Response, they are sent to question 3 (short or long answer) or question 4 (file upload).
File Upload for Alternative Assessment
More often, I think the file upload question will be useful as a stand alone, single question Form. This is a way to collect student work that is less traditional, especially when students are given the flexibility to create in whatever platform they choose. If some write a response in Word, others create a slideshow in PowerPoint, others use an audio recording tool in OneNote or PowerPoint, or in Voice recorder, Audacity, Vocaroo or Padlet, and others create something in Minecraft and use the Screen recorder in PowerPoint, they can all submit their work in the same Form for easy access and organization for the teacher.
Options in File Upload
When you create the file upload question, you can choose to limit responses to anywhere from 1-10 files, choose 10MB, 100MB or 1GB as the size limit for a single file, and limit to specific types of files, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, PDF, image, video and/or audio.
The file upload question type turns Microsoft Forms into a highly versatile collection tool that gets teachers thinking of assessment in more flexible ways.
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