Thinking about the Task Type PRODUCE

Differentiating between the interactions available for task CREATE

The following question is addressed in this section: if you want to construct a test question which presents your candidates with a CREATE task, how do you decide between the interactions available?  

There are two main differences between the two interactions available for creating something:

Standard test or larger project?

Firstly, the way a candidate submits their response differs: Extended Text implies the test is run under normal exam conditions with time limits. File Upload gives candidates the freedom to prepare work in their time (and in their own way) before the test has started.

The LANGUAGE differentiator

Secondly, Extended Text is limited to text-based responses, whereas File Upload doesn't specify the type of response.

If we plot the two interaction types on the LANGUAGE spectrum as follows:

We can see that Extended Text, as the name suggests, is language-based, whereas File Upload potentially covers the whole spectrum, as its content is not specified. 

To sum up, the two considerations when choosing between the two main interactions for a particular test question of the type CREATING. Firstly, the nature of the content of the examination: if you don't want to set a language-based task (but instead, another type of project), you would need to choose File Upload. Secondly, if candidates need to be able to work on a particular project in their own time, in advance of submitting it, you would also need to choose the File Upload interaction. For a standard test item which requests a piece of writing to be submitted under the usual test conditions, Extended Text would probably be the one to use.