How to Update Multiple Items Simultaneously

The 'Bulk Update' option allows users to update the contents and settings of multiple items within a subject simultaneously. This article explains how to perform a bulk update.

Users can add or remove the following features from items using 'Bulk Update':

  • Source Material
  • Media
  • Tags
  • Labels on Multiple Choice and Multiple Response questions.
  • Randomised order of answer options on Multiple Choice, Multiple Response, and Either/Or questions.
  • Comments
  • Workflow Status
  • Item Owner
  • Fix order of items in item sets

Note: Bulk updates are restricted to items within one subject and one individual feature per update.

Step 1: Locate 'Bulk Update'

Navigate to the 'Item Authoring' section of Surpass and select the subject containing the items you want to update.

Next, navigate to the 'Bulk Update' button in the top-right of the subject screen.


Step 2: Select a feature to update

Selecting 'Bulk Update' to choose your update type from the options in the 'Select update type' window.

After choosing a feature to update, decide whether you would like to add or remove this feature to/from your items. Select 'Add to items' or 'Remove from items' accordingly.

Step 3: Select the Items to Update

Upon choosing to add or remove a feature, you can select the items you wish to update.

You can filter items by workflow status and/or item type by using the funnel icon.

Select a folder or item set to apply the update to all contained items.

Next, either select the right-pointing arrow or drag and drop items into the right panel to include them in the bulk update.

Step 4: Completing the update

After selecting your items, navigate to the 'Select options' step by selecting the right-pointing arrow button at the top of the wizard.

Select your options. These will differ depending on the type of update you are completing (for detailed information about each feature's options, see this article's Appendix).

Navigate to 'Finish' by selecting the right-pointing arrow. Here you can review your chosen settings and choose to 'Confirm & Finish'.

An email confirmation will be sent when the changes have been applied.

Appendix: Feature options

Select the links to jump to the relevant sections.

  • Source Material
  • Media
  • Tags
  • Labels on Multiple Choice and Multiple Response questions.
  • Randomised order of answer options on Multiple Choice, Multiple Response, and Either/Or questions.
  • Comments
  • Workflow Status
  • Item Owner
  • Fix Item Set Order
  • Source Material

    Add: Remove:

    Selecting 'Add Source Material' takes you to the Media Library, where you can choose the source material file you would like to add.

    Once selected, you can edit the filename, which becomes the source material's title as it appears to candidates.

    Before proceeding to the 'Finish' screen, you can select 'Keep all existing source material files' to add this new source material to any pre-existing source materials currently applied to the items you are updating.

    Note: Only one piece of source material may be added per update. You must import source material to the Media Library to apply it to items in a bulk update.

    In 'Select options', a table displays information about items including the name of any attached source material files.

    Check the relevant boxes down the right side of the wizard to remove source material from selected items. If unchecked, the source material will remain with the item.

    Note: Any items that have source material attached will be automatically selected for removal.

    Media

    Add: Remove:
    Selecting 'Add Media' takes you to the Media Library, where you can choose the media file you want to add.

    Once selected, you can choose how the media will appear on the page from various layout options.

    Check 'Allow Pop Ups in Image' to enable the image to be opened in a pop-up window at full resolution.

    Note: Only one media file can be added per update. This will replace any existing media currently attached to the selected items. You must import media to Media Library to apply it to items in a bulk update.

    In 'Select options', a table displays information about items including the names of any attached media files.

    Tick the boxes down the right side of the wizard to remove media from selected items. If unchecked, the media will remain with the item.

    Note: Any items that have media attached will already have been automatically selected for removal.

    Tags

    Add: Remove:

    In 'Bulk Update', tags are grouped into 'Learning Outcomes', 'Units', and 'Keywords'.

    You will be invited to view tags attached to a few of the selected items and individually assign any of these to all the items selected for the bulk update. To do this, select the '+' icon next to the relevant tags, highlighting them in green, and select 'Apply all [tag group name] to select items'.

    If you have the necessary permissions, you can create a new tag by typing directly into the 'Add new tags' entry field and selecting '+'. This applies the new tag to the items selected for the bulk update.

    Manually remove individual tags from items selected for the bulk update by selecting the '-' icon next to the tag, highlighting it in red.


    You can also update the tags on up to 5000 items using a spreadsheet. Using a spreadsheet allows you to define tag value additions and removals at the same time on an item-by-item basis.

    Select the 'Upload CSV' button. Next, choose 'Download Sample CSV' to download a template spreadsheet. You can add custom tag group columns to the spreadsheet if the custom tag groups already exist in the subject. You can also use this method to update IRT tag groups.

    Enter the Item Name or Item ID of the items you want to update into the spreadsheet. You must select the correct radio button in the 'Identifier' field when uploading the spreadsheet.

    Add new tag values against each item in the relevant tag group column. You can create new tag values if the 'Allow authors to create their own tags' setting is enabled at subject level. If not, tag values must already exist in the subject. Any tags you add will overwrite all tag information for the items. Leaving the tag value cell blank will remove any pre-existing tag values. You can add multiple tag values by separating them with a pipe symbol ('|').

    Once you have added all tag values, save the .csv file to your device.

    To upload the .csv file back to Surpass, select 'Browse'. Locate the .csv file on your device and select 'Open'. Surpass will validate the spreadsheet and alert you to any errors.

    Note: Updating tags via .csv will affect all items regardless of workflow status.

    Labels

    You may add and remove individual labels for Multiple Choice and Multiple Response questions.

    Add: Remove:
    In 'Select options', use the drop-down menu to specify whether your labels should be alphabetical (e.g., A, B, C, etc.), numerical (1, 2, 3, etc.), or customisable. If you select 'Custom', the fields will remain blank for manual entry. After selecting the items for a bulk update, you may proceed directly to the 'Finish' screen using the right-pointing arrow. Labels will be removed from all selected items.

    Randomise

    You may enable or disable a random ordering of answer options for Multiple Choice, Multiple Response, and Either/Or questions.

    After selecting the items for a bulk update, you may proceed directly to the 'Finish' screen using the rightward arrow. Randomised answer options will either be enabled or disabled for all selected items.

    Comments

    Add: Remove:
    In 'Select options', type your comment (of no more than 500 characters) into the entry field. This will add the comment to all selected items. After selecting your items, you may proceed directly to the 'Finish' screen using the rightward arrow.

    Workflow Status

    You may bulk update the workflow statuses of selected items. The status level you are able to assign to a group of items will depend on your permissions.

    In 'Select options', use the drop-down menu to specify the new status for the selected items.

    Note: Only items set to 'Live' status (or its custom equivalent) can be included in tests.

    Owner

    You can update the owner assigned to up to 5000 items using a spreadsheet.

    Select the 'Upload CSV' button. Next, choose 'Download Sample CSV' to download a template spreadsheet.

    Enter the Item Name or Item ID of the items you want to update into the spreadsheet. Item names must be unique within the subject. You must select the correct radio button in the 'Identifier' field when uploading the spreadsheet.

    Once you have added all items, save the .csv file to your device. The .csv file must:

    • Contain a maximum of 5000 items
    • Be a maximum of 2MB

    To upload the .csv file back to Surpass, select 'Browse'. Locate the .csv file on your device and select 'Open'. Surpass will validate the spreadsheet and alert you to any errors.

    Select the right arrow to move to the 'Finish' tab. Here, you must confirm the number of items you are updating. Select 'Confirm' to start the bulk update.

    Fix Item Set Order


    You can enable or disable the 'Fix the order of items' setting for multiple item sets.

    Only item sets with the setting enabled or disabled respectively will appear in the list to select from.

    After selecting the item sets for a bulk update, you may proceed directly to the 'Finish' screen using the rightward arrow.

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