As an enrolled student at WGU you can take advantage of a free offer to obtain Microsoft Office. Please learn more about accessing, installing, and running it at Microsoft Office 365 for WGU Students. Using this software, especially Word, Excel, and PowerPoint will allow you to save your work easily in file formats that can be submitted for evaluation without difficulty. The information below explains this further and discusses other applications that may convert files to acceptable formats.
You are working through your course of study and are now ready to submit your work into Taskstream. To ensure your work is evaluated quickly and accurately, you must save the file appropriately. Whether you have Microsoft Office, Apple iWorks, LibreOffice, OpenOffice, Microsoft Works, GoogleDocs, or other programs, there are four primary formats in which you need to save your work: docx, xlsx, pptx, or pdf.
How to save your work for submission
The best formats to ensure your work is graded quickly and accurately are the Microsoft Office formats:
Word-processing documents: .docx (or .doc)
Spreadsheets: .xlsx (or .xls)
Presentation slides: .pptx (or .ppt)
Additionally, nearly all applications can export or save files in PDF (Portable Document Format) format (.pdf) which can be opened accurately nearly every time.
The file formats above are the most stable. They are compatible with most software, and can be opened reliably. This is important, as you want your work viewed correctly by WGU’s evaluation faculty members. If your work is saved in other formats, it may result in delays and file errors.
In the File menu of your software, you will always want to use the Save As… or Export commands to ensure your work is being saved in these proper formats.
Note: Below the text of this article are tutorials available for download on how to save or export your documents into the most accessible file formats available in Google Drive and iWorks.
It is always a best practice to avoid using special characters in filenames. Periods, commas, and other characters can often cause file errors which means your work may not be evaluated. To avoid delays, keep filenames simple yet meaningful.
Good filename structure: JohnsonMGT2Task2Rev1.docx
Poor filename structure: Johnson:MGT2.Task,2-Rev1.pages
Tips for file creation and saving
Examples of word processing programs are: Microsoft Word, Pages, OpenOffice, LibreOffice, Google Docs, and Microsoft Works. All of these applications allow you to save files as Microsoft Word (.docx) files or PDF documents. Saving in the Microsoft Word format will allow you to make further changes to the file if needed.
Note: Avoid saving files in RTF format, especially if there are any tables or graphics in the document.
Examples of spreadsheet programs are: Microsoft Excel, Numbers, OpenOffice, LibreOffice, and Google Docs. All of these applications allow you to save files as Microsoft Excel (.xlsx) files or PDF documents. Saving in the Microsoft Excel format will allow you to make further changes to the file if needed.
Examples of presentation programs are: Microsoft PowerPoint, Keynote, OpenOffice, LibreOffice, and Google Docs. All of these applications allow you to save files as Microsoft PowerPoint (.pptx) files or PDF documents. Saving in the Microsoft PowerPoint format will allow you to make further changes to the file if needed.
Note: Emaze and Prezi files (see below) are not acceptable.
Avoid using animations including slide and object transitions. These animations increase file size and increase the chance of file errors. During the evaluation process, evaluators do not see these types of formatting anyway.
Avoid embedding videos in PowerPoint or other presentation software. Embedding videos exponentially increase the file size, and usually the videos cannot be viewed by evaluators.
Focus on content and don’t worry about graphics. You don’t need fancy backgrounds. Your work is evaluated on its content and not the aesthetics of the presentation. Graphic elements increase the odds of file errors and increase file size. Larger files take longer to download, and thus increase the time to get your work returned.
What about Prezi? Although this application that has gained popularity in the past few years, please do not use it for WGU assessment submissions. The files are not safe; they are hard to evaluate; and frequently they cannot be viewed by evaluators. Unless a Prezi file is converted and submitted as a .pdf document, this file type is not permitted.
Building your presentation in Google Docs, Libre Office, Microsoft Office, or Keynote will be a much better idea. Be sure to save these files as a PowerPoint (.pptx) or PDF document.
How can I save my work in the Microsoft Office formats?
iWorks (Pages, Numbers, Keynote)
When your work is ready for upload to Taskstream, select the option to Export To command as shown below:
Keynote File menu
Pages File menu
Using the Export To command provides the options to save your work in a way that can be evaluated quickly and accurately.
These programs can save and use Microsoft Office formats in a native way. Make sure when you save your file you use the Save As… command as seen below.
This will open a Save As dialogue box in which you can select Microsoft PowerPoint from the Downloads files type menu. You can select other relevant Microsoft Office formats depending on the type of document you have created.
In GoogleDocs, be sure to use Download As to download a file in the appropriate format to upload to Taskstream.
WGU evaluators cannot evaluate links to GoogleDrive. You need to submit a downloaded file into Taskstream as shown above.
There are other Microsoft programs that are not part of the standard MS Office suite of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. These include Publisher, Project, and Visio. These and other programs not listed above will have similar options to Save As… or Export as PDF documents (or the docx, xlsx, or pptx formats noted earlier). Always export files of any other type to PDF or these acceptable formats, as WGU evaluators do not have access to these non-standard software programs.
Article Number: 36411