Digital PDF Exams:
Lets start with the ‘old school’ method: (1) Download the PDF file, (2) Print the PDF file, (3) Workout everything with Pencil on the printed document, (4) Scan the finished handwritten pages with a scanner app on my phone (ScanBot, Adobe Scan, Genius Scan, Evernote Scannable, etc), (5) Save this multi-page scanned document in PDF format using B&W or grayscale mode to insure the filesize isn’t too big, (6) Upload the scanned document to my computer, dropbox, google drive, etc., and lastly, (7) Upload this scanned document to Canvas for submission.
Now a more modern method I use……
My common modern workflow is to work the problems in Google Sheet, Mathematica, CyMath, by hand on a piece of paper or on a digital pen/pencil application like evernote, onenote, sketchpad, notepad, etc. Basically, I work the problem using whatever is easiest and best for helping me work a problem quickly and in a way that I feel like I am learning the most and getting the most conceptually from the effort of working the problem. I lean toward using spreadsheets or computer apps/software because I can often setup a problem in such a way that the program I use to solve a specific problem can be used as a good template or starting point for other similar problems.
Okay, so now I have a bunch of problems worked out… But I need to make a SINGLE PDF FILE to summarize everything. I have several methods I use to do this…. (1) Most commonly, I just use MS-Word or Google Docs and copy paste all the ‘stuff’ I created above into one document. Its easy to cut and paste most text from pdf to a word processor like MS-Word or Google Docs, and its also easy to get image inserted. Then both MS-Word and Google Docs direct allows you to save as a PDF file. (2) I use a pdf annotation program like Adobe Acrobat, PDF-Expert, iAnnotate, etc to direct annotate and insert pics/images into the original PDF file and just save it with a different name. (3)… I’ll make a more detailed blog with links about workflow…. This comment is getting too long!!
All graphing/plotting programs that I know about typically allow a plot to be exported to PDF or a standard image format (jpeg, gif, etc) and then can be inserted (imported) into the PDF exam document. This is what I do for the solution sets to all hwk and past exams.
ONE LAST POINT… I make sure I save my pdf file in a small color gamat or in B&W or greyscale to insure the filesize isn’t too big (less than a few Mb).