Tips on using the new entry portal
Here are some tips to help prevent you from spending more time than necessary to get your entry in.
> Remove all formatting
If you’re drafting your submission in Microsoft Word (or any another word processing software), please do not include any formatting before copying into the portal. You can apply some formatting once you have pasted the text in the portal e.g. bolding, underline, dot points etc. For some reason bugs are getting caught up in documents that have formatting and are being transferred over to the portal.
Recommendation: Paste only text and format in the portal. DO NOT copy and paste images in the portal. These need uploading.
> Word count inconsistent?
If your word count in Word doesn’t match the Word count in the portal when you’ve copied and pasted, your total word count could be incorrect. Again, you must remove all formatting.
- Make it all single line spacing (1.0 line spacing)
- Remove any page breaks, section breaks, paragraph spacing etc
- Remove all dot points and spaces between paragraphs
- Click on CLEAR FORMATTING (in styles panel of the toolbar)
If you do all of these things the Word document will look pretty bland (this is what you want at this stage). Before you copy and paste into the portal, note your word count in Word of the section you’re copying. If the word count is not the same in the portal when you copy and paste, then remove it and go back to the Word document and ensure you’ve followed all the steps above to remove formatting.
Tip: Start copying and pasting a small section at a time rather than the complete answers to get it all transferred effectively.
> Is it a table or an image?
There has been much discussion lately about what constitutes an ‘image’. Tables are not an image as you can create a table from within the portal.
- Tables are to be inserted into the submission as a part of the text and contributes towards the overall word count.
- Images are to support what is written within the submission (usually as evidence).
Uploading a table as an image will be seen as an obvious attempt to include more words.
> Adding a table
You can either copy a whole table over from Word, or start it from scratch in the portal. In pasting a table into the portal all shading, fonts, colours etc will be removed for you. You can resize columns and rows by dragging the line, and you can make headings bold and larger if you want to, but that’s it.
If you are having problems with a table, consider removing bullet points and do not include images within tables. YOu can add bullet points in your table once you have pasted in your text.
BIG TIP: When drafting a table in Word, do not merge cells (especially vertical merging) as the portal will not accept merged cells in any way.
If you paste a table and you see extra little square boxes around it, you will need to make sure that the table in Word that you are working from has no formatting. So to remove these extra boxes, highlight the table (in your Word document) and select ‘clear formatting’ in the styles tab at the top toolbar in Word before copying and pasting into the online portal.
> What sort of images to use?
Images can be any of the following:
- pictures (either professional images or snapshots from your phone)
- screenshots from your computer (social media activity/websites/review sites etc)
Tips: Try to vary the type of images throughout your entry. Images are there to support a response to a question. You can include ‘composite’ images meaning you can upload a collage of images as one. Words can be included in an image only if it supports the image e.g. place names on a map. A testimonial embedded in an image would not be acceptable as this could have been typed in the response area.
In the User guide to the portal you’ll see that it is recommended your image be Under 1MB, and that you resize it in the portal to 250px width. You can do this by highlighting the image, then click the Insert Image button to open up a box that allows you to edit.
You can choose the most appropriate size image. If it appears as you wish in the response field then this is exactly how the judges will view it also.
BIG TIP: Just remember to upload your images – do not copy and paste images in any circumstance or this will have a
> Adding captions
- Use up to 6 words to caption your image
- A total of 25 images are allowed across your entry inserted wherever you wish.
- If you insert 25 images, then the 6 word captions will equate to a total of 150 words which is ADDITIONAL to your 12,500 (ie. your word count total including 25 images will be 12,650 maximum).
When you go to add captions, it is simply, click along the right side of the image and enter, add your caption, then enter again to recommence writing your submission. This means captions will be the same font size.