Submitting Handwritten Assignments in Brightspace

How to Submit Your Assignment using the assignments tool.

You may be using the assignments tool in Brightspace to submit your assignments electronically. You can find out more information on how to use assignments on the Pima Brightspace Student Guide: About Assignments.

You can use a scanner to create a PDF file of your completed assignment, or you can use your smartphone to take images of your work that can be compiled in a Word document. The submission you upload will need to be a single document that is less than 2 MB in size. The instructions below will help you create acceptable documents.

How to Submit Your Assignment in a Discussion

You may be using a Discussion thread in Brightspace to submit your assignments electronically. You can find out more information on how to use Discussions on the Pima Brightspace Student Guide: About Discussions page.

You can use a scanner to create a PDF file of your completed assignment, or you can use your smartphone to take images of your work that can be compiled in a Word document. The submission you upload will need to be a single document that is less than 2 MB in size. The instructions below will help you create acceptable documents.

Using a Scanner

Every scanner is different and has different steps to create your document. You may need to look at your scanner's manual for specific instructions. If you do not have a scanner, there are scanners available to you at each campus library. If you need help, just ask a librarian.

Your finished document needs to be less than 10 MB in size. The settings you choose when scanning will affect your file's size. There are several settings you need to define before scanning:

File type - Your assignments should be saved as a PDF (Portable Document Format). Remember, you cannot add to a PDF document once it is scanned.

Dots per inch (DPI) - The higher the DPI number is, the better the quality of the image. But the higher the DPI, the larger the file size. You need to keep our file size small so you will want to choose 200 DPI. 200 DPI is small enough to email but clear enough to read.

Color - Choose black and white for the best quality at 200 DPI, and to keep the file size low.

Here is an example of the settings options from one scanner (in the Community Campus computer lab):

The PDF dialog box with the settings marked as Save as PDF, black and white, at 200dpi

Using Your Smartphone or Tablet

Just like scanner, each smartphone handles photos differently. You will need to know how to get photos from your phone onto your computer.

You will need to take photos of your work for each problem individually. The photos need to be placed into a Word document or the equivalent.

  1. Take one photo of your work for each problem.
  2. Transfer the photos to your computer.
    (Depending on the device, you may do this using email, using an instant transfer like AirDrop or Pushbutton, or via USB cable.)
    • Choose the smallest size if you are given an option. This example is from an iPhone:
  3. Open a Word document, a Google document, or the equivalent.
  4. Insert your images into the document, one per page. In Word:
    • Select the Insert tab and choose Pictures from the Illustrations group.
    • Browse your folders to find your first image and select it.
    • Select Insert.
    • On the same Insert tab, choose Page Break in the Pages group. This will take you to the next page.
    • Repeat the steps above for each image.
    • Once you have finished, make sure your name and assignment name are on the document.
  5. Title your document and Save as a Word document (.docx).
    • If using a Google docs, download the document to your computer so you can find it later using Brightspace.

How to Take a Proper Photo

You don't have to be a master photographer to use your smartphone or tablet to get a good picture of your homework. There are many free scanners for smartphones (a really good one is Cam Scanner available for iOS and Android), or you can use your device's built in camera. Phone scanners can be helpful as they offer grids to make sure your document is straight, and some have enhancements for poor lighting, etc.

A good, clear photo of your assignment is important to be sure you are graded properly. Here are some tips for taking a good photo:

  1. Take your picture with good lighting.
  2. Hold the camera parallel to (directly above) your paper. Do not tilt the camera.
    Notice the notebook in the viewfinder of these phones. Your paper should appear flat.
  3. Your mobile phone may rotate the photo the wrong way. Before sending the photo, you may need to use your camera's editing tool to turn the photo (on the iPhone press Edit), or if you are adding the picture to a Word document, you can rotate the picture there.
  4. Make sure you have the entire image in your viewfinder.

    You want one problem per photo, and all the numbers count!