Sprout E-Learning: Cyber Monday Sale!


I’ve been working really hard to get Sprout E-Learning up and running; it’s almost there, but I thought what better time than Cyber Monday to put it’s first course, Articulate Storyline 2: Basics, on sale? There’s no time like the present!

If you’re not interested in learning about Articulate Storyline, there will be an Instructional Design Certificate coming in January 2017, so sign up for Sprout’s mailing list to get updates!

If you are interested in this Cyber Monday deal, head over to Sprout’s temporary URL, click the Buy button, and use coupon code: yippie.

Here are the details on Articulate Storyline 2: Basics:

  1. Have you or your organization just purchased Storyline 2?
  2. As an organization, are you looking to quickly get your employees trained on using Storyline 2?
  3. Are you looking to quickly learn the ins and outs of Storyline 2?
  4. Do you want to take your e-learning development up a notch?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, this course is for you!

All too often, developers are thrown deep into the trenches of a new authoring tool with zero training. As humans, we’re fairly adaptable, so this is no big deal…except when you have looming deadlines. To maintain efficiency and reduce costs for you or your organization, training needs to be made available – otherwise, you’ll spend more time and resources in the start up development and/or revision stages of your project.

Articulate Storyline 2 is a powerful e-learning authoring tool that allows you to take your creativity to the next level and easily author your own captivating stories. By helping you leverage built-in development functionality, you can quickly create interactive and engaging e-learning experiences.

By adding this course to your training arsenal, my goal is to ensure that you have everything you need to successfully create high-quality e-learning courses using Articulate Storyline 2, while simultaneously maintaining your efficiency. No one needs a steep learning curve when it comes to new authoring tools!

This course is designed to walk you through the entire life cycle of a story, from creating a new story, to publishing and sharing your story. Walkthrough videos will take you on a tour of how to effectively enhance your story by adding images, audio, screen recordings, and interactive media. I’ll also show you how to master the trigger wizard, create high-quality assessment items, and how to customize the player.

Within this course, you will learn how to:

  • Build a new story and familiarize yourself with the user-friendly Storyline interface
  • Discover how to let your content do they talking with the help of text, images, and characters
  • Improve the quality of your story using interactive elements such as buttons, markers, and screen recordings
  • Create enhanced interactivity using triggers, states, and hotspots
  • Build practical and common interactions, such as Tabs, Timelines, and Custom Menus
  • Assess your learners using built-in question types or custom freeform questions
  • Preview your story and modify the player settings to create a customized learning experience
  • Share your story by exploring the available publishing options

Taught by the author of Articulate Storyline Essentials and Mastering Articulate Storyline, Ashley Chiasson, you are in good hands. Ashley will use screenshots, video demonstrations, and exercise files (that you can interact with) to emphasize all teaching points throughout this course, providing you with ample opportunity to become an Articulate Storyline 2: Basics champion!

DevLearn 2016 Session – BYOL: Using Variables in Articulate Storyline #demo #freedownload


So, today I’m talking about the session I gave at DevLearn 2016. It was my first Bring Your Own Laptop (BYOL) session, and there were a few hiccups, but I would definitely revise the delivery and give it again! In this session, I showed participants how to use variables in Articulate Storyline to create a closed captioning effect, and to create a very basic progress meter.

Closed Captioning Effect

The technique for this effect was first shown to me by Nancy Woinoski at an Articulate Community Roadshow in Toronto a few years ago. I liked the clean effect, and thought it would be a great one to share with the greater commonwealth of e-learning developers! There are many other ways that you can create this sort of effect, and perhaps one day, you will no longer need a workaround for closed captioning in Storyline (pleeeeease, Articulate?!). Until then, we have workarounds. David Lindeberg actually drafted a great post on how he approaches closed captioning in Storyline – you can read it here.

Download this Participant File, and this Completed File. You can use the participant file to walkthrough the steps with me, and you can use the completed file to reverse engineer the programming and figure it out on your own!

Here’s the video walkthrough:

Progress Meters

Next, I showed participants how to create a very simple progress meter to track learner progress through a course. I can’t remember exactly where I saw this method, but I know it was via Articulate, and it was a long time ago (I think it was in Storyline 1). If you know which post I’m referencing, please link it in the comments below, because I scoured the community but I’m coming up short and would love to provide attribution.

After running into David Anderson on my coffee run the morning of my session, I was told doing both closed captioning and progress meters was ambitious for a 1-hour session, so I was a bit nervous, but I think this example is easy enough that most folks were able to follow along.

Download the Participant File and the Completed File, and then watch the demo below. If you want the Course Starter Template that I based this demo off, you can also download that.

Terminology Tuesday: E-Learning Portfolios


I’m shocked that I haven’t included this as a Terminology Tuesday. I’ve written extensively about portfolios, which I’ll link to below, but I began drafting this post after DevLearn 2016. Tim Slade was giving a Morning Buzz on Friday morning regarding Portfolios, and at dinner the night before he mentioned that I should pop by. I did, and was first surprised by the amount of people who already had portfolios, but also by how much the discussion was able to help 1) those who didn’t have one yet, and 2) those who needed information related to more of the logistics behind portfolio building.

In any event, being an instructional designer, e-learning designer, or e-learning developer without a portfolio is pretty much a crime. At least if you want to position yourself well within the market. There are a lot of developers out there competing for jobs that you might hope to have (now or in the future), so it’s important to get your work out there, but to do so in a strategic manner.

E-Learning Portfolio

An e-learning portfolio is a container that houses most of your best work. The goal of your portfolio is to be able to provide a visual guide, for prospective clients, as to what you can do within the technologies you work within.

Sure, you might not be able to share all of your coolest things because of non-disclosure agreements or proprietary content concerns, but you can still create SOMETHING. How will prospective clients know that you can do the type of work they need done if you have no way of showing that you’re capable of doing that type of work?!

I’m not going to repeat myself too much here, but if you want to dive further down the hole of why I think portfolios are so important, please check out the following resources. I include tons of tips for creating an effective e-learning portfolio, and have even been told this past week, that the ‘How to Build Your E-Learning Portfolio’ series has been a good job aid and effective motivator!


How to Build Your E-Learning Portfolio – Part 1

How to Build Your E-Learning Portfolio – Part 2

How to Build Your E-Learning Portfolio – Part 3

How to Build Your E-Learning Portfolio – Part 4

Podcast: Share Your Tips for Creating Effective E-Learning Portfolios

Learning Solutions 2015 Presentation: Building Your E-Learning Portfolio

Screencast Monday: Coin Flip Animation in Articulate Storyline

So, on Day 1 of DevLearn, I posted a recap, and in that recap, I outlined a coin-flip animation effect that Ron Price of Yukon Learning had showed us in Articulate Storyline. Jeff Kortenbosch had asked for a video demo, so here it is! I’ll also include a recap of the steps:

  • Create the shape you want to animate.
  • Create a transparent rectangle over the shape you created.
  • Select both items and group them.
  • Animate the group to swivel.
  • Enter the group, and move the original shape down the timeline, so the original shape only appears after the majority of swivels have occurred.