Which files are supported by Brightspace?

In this article, you will find information about requirements on the type, size and name for files uploaded as course content, and as students submission to an assignment in your course.  

Whatever the media type, it’s important to know the guidelines surrounding the publishing of copyright materials in Brightspace. The Library can assist.

For information about placing copyright materials in your course, please look here.

Course content files requirements

Lecturers can upload a wide variety of documents, images, and video file types to use for course content. Students view the files inline; however, they can also download and/or print the files, if they have the appropriate permissions.

To display documents inline, the Document Conversion Service converts documents uploaded to the Content tool into PDFs. The documents are converted during upload instead of during learner access, which reduces wait times when rendering the documents to learners. For best performance, D2L recommends uploading all non-HTML documents as PDF files, since PDF files do not go through the conversion process. When students download documents, they are saved in their native file formats. (Source: D2L)

For all files there is a file size limit of 1GB; for larger files, it is recommended to use other platforms such as OneDrive or Surf File Sender.

File type File extension Notes
Web document HTM, HTML, MHT, MHTML Brightspace Learning Environment strips the <title> tag and text within the tag from user-created web documents
Text document
  • PPT, PPS, PPTX 
  • PDF
  • DOC, DOCX
  • XML, XLS, XLSX, XLS
  • RTF, TXT, WPD

Image JPG, JPEG, PNG, GIF, BMP, TIF, TIFF
Media SWF, MPG, MPEG, RM, MP3, MP4, M4V, M4A, AVI, WAV, RAM, ASF, MOV, RA The extensions MP4, M4V, and M4A allow users to drag entire albums, video podcasts, and movies from iTunes
Compressed files ZIP, RAR, 7ZIP
Will be displayed only as a link for download

Course submission files requirements

If your course has activities where students are required to submit their work to Brightspace, then below you can find information about the file requirements for a successful file submission by students.

Assignment submission file requirements

1. File type

In the table below you can find an overview of which file types are supported as a submission to an assignment in Brightspace:

File type File extension Notes
Text document
  • DOC, DOCX
  • PPT, PPTX, PPS
  • PDF
  • XLS, XLSX 
  • RTF, TXT, WPD, XML
Note that if Turnitin is turned on you will have to check the table below for further details.
Image
  • JPG, JPEG, PNG, 
  • GIF
  • TIF, TIFF
  • BMP

Media
  • MP3, MP4
  • MPG, MPEG
  • MOV, M4V
  • ASF, AVI, RA, RAM, RM, SWF, WAV
The extensions MP4, M4V, and M4A allow users to drag entire albums, video podcasts, and movies from iTunes.
Web document HTML, HTM, MHT, MHTML Brightspace Learning Environment strips the <title> tag and text within the tag from user created web documents.
Compressed files ZIP, RAR, 7ZIP
2. File size
  • maximum of 1 GB
  • if your file uses images: reduce the image size or resolution to decrease the overall file size
3. File name

To prevent issues while submitting your work to Brightspace assignment be aware of the following:

  • Do not use special characters such as \ / : * ? " < > | ~ # % & + { }
  • Use max 45 characters
  • Delete any leading or trailing spaces
  • Do not use two dots before the file extension (example: ..docx)

Turnitin® submission file requirements

1. File type

If your assignment is a Turnitin® assignment, there are some further details you will have to keep in mind about the file type your student will be able to submit for the Similarity Report to be generated.

File type & extension Note
  • Microsoft Word® (.doc/.docx)
  • OpenOffice Text (.odt)
  • WordPerfect® (.wpd)
  • PostScript (.ps)
  • HTML
  • Hangul Word Processor file (.hwp)
  • Rich text format (.rtf)
  • Plain text (.txt)

  • Adobe® PDF
Turnitin® will not accept PDF image files, forms, or portfolios, files that do not contain highlightable text (e.g. a scanned file - usually an image), documents containing multiple files or files created with software other than Adobe Acrobat®. (Source: Turnitin®)
  • Microsoft PowerPoint® (.pptx, .ppt, .ppsx, and .pps)
It is possible to submit PowerPoint® files through Turnitin.com, TurnitinUK.com, Turnitin Basic integrations, newer versions of the Turnitin® Direct integrations, and LTI compliant integrations only. Turnitin® converts the PowerPoint® slide deck into a static PDF, leaving all text and images in their original format but leaving out features such as presenter notes, embedded video, and animations. Text with visual effects is not supported, and it is recommended that any visual effects such as shadows and 3D be removed prior to submitting to Turnitin®. (Source: Turnitin®)
  • Microsoft Excel® (.xls and .xlsx)
The version of the file that can be viewed in the Document Viewer will look the same as it would if the Excel file had been saved as a PDF and submitted to Turnitin®. We highly recommend that users pay attention to the image preview provided in the single file submission to verify that the file is presented in an acceptable manner. Users can adjust the way the file looks by editing the page setup and print area settings for the file prior to saving it and submitting it to Turnitin®. (Source: Turnitin®)
  • Password protected files
  • Microsoft® Works (.wps) files
  • Microsoft Word 2007 macros-enabled .docm files
  • OpenOffice Text (.odt) files created and downloaded from Google Docs online
  • Document (.doc) files created using OpenOffice, as they are not 100% Microsoft Word equivalent
  • Apple Pages
  • Spreadsheets created outside of Microsoft Excel (i.e. .ods)
  • Text with visual effects
Turnitin® will not accept these to generate Similarity Reports
2. File size
  • less than 100MB (max 2MB if the file only contains text)
  • has a minimum of 20 words; and
  • is less than 800 pages.

(Source)

Restricted files

For security reasons, the uploading of certain file types to Brightspace is restricted by the provider D2L.

This is to improve system security. If such files are needed to be shared, it is still possible to put them in a zip file or via a link to an external source (such as personal WUR OneDrive).

File extension

Where files are restricted File extension

Restricted from Brightspace Learning Environment (as Content and as an Assignment submission)
ASP, ASPX, EXE, BAT, DLL, COM, ASA, ASAX, ASCX, ASHX, ASMX, AXD, CDX, CER, CONFIG, IDC, CSPROJ, JSL, LICX, REM, RESOURCES, RESX, SHTM, SHTML, SOAP, VB, VBPROJ, VJSPROJ, VSDISCO, WEBINFO, INI, MSI, MSP, SCR, SCT, WSF, WSC, VBS, VBE, CGI, CMD, HTA, JAR, LIB, PL, PM, PS1, SH, VBSCRIPT
Restricted from HTML Editor
RTF, PPT, PDF, DOC, XLS, TXT, WPD, MHT, MHTML, PPS, MUS, ZIP

Restricted from Content

CSS

Source: D2L

Now you know which files are supported by Brightspace!