Help with a hyperlink/branching problem

Hi all

I'm trying to build an activity in which learners click on a 'spot the problem' picture, which has 10 problems. Each time they identify a problem, I want a counter in the corner of the screen to go up/down. I'm trying to do this via hyperlinks, which link to an answer screen, on which I can have my counter at the correct number. But the problem is, I can't control the order in which the user clicks the hyperlinks, so I can't know how many they click on and therefore what number my counter should show. Does that make sense?

Ideally the counter would somehow be controlled by clicks, but I can't think how.

I'm building in PowerPoint at the moment, but I have both Studio and Storyline (although I am a real beginner in Storyline).

I'm happy to clarify further.

Anne England

22 Replies
Jeanette Brooks

@Owen: LOL. I know, right!? Stuff like this becomes so fun and easy in Storyline! BTW, if you are looking for some suggestions on making a business case for Storyline, this is an awesome discussion thread to check out.

@Anne: NOOOOO definitely not a genius. It's easy to do things like this when you have an easy tool.  Basically, you just create a simple number variable whose initial value is 0 ... then create triggers to tell Storyline to add 1 to the value each time the learner clicks on a correct item. Let me do a quick screen recording so I can show you what I mean. Be back in a little bit. 

Daniel Brigham

Hi, Jeanette: Sort of related to the cherry tomato example you shared--I am planning a mini-course in Storyline entitled "Writing Tips for E-learning Pros," and one of the activities I wanted to do was have the learners revise sentences (maybe even a small paragraph) on their own, with the goal of cutting word count. (Of course, the easiest way to do this is to put up a Word doc and tell the learners to keep an eye on the word count in the lower left corner.)

Using variables, can Storyline allow learners to edit text on-screen and keep track of how many words the text they have edited currently contains? For instance,

"Daniel is hoping that he can get away from using a Microsoft Word document." (13 words)

Then I would give instructions to the learner that they edit the text to make it more concise. A variable at the bottom of the screen keeps track of how many words the learner is using.  My guess the best way to go about this IS to put up a Word doc, though. You never know till you ask. btw, just in case you're curious the sentence should read something like, "Daniel hopes he can avoid using a Word document." (9 words)

Jeanette Brooks

Hi Daniel! That's a great question! With the way variables currently work in Storyline, there isn't a way to evaluate or display the word count in a text entry field. Also, for an exercise that deals with writing/wordsmithing/condensing, I think the challenge would be in both evaluating the word count and evaluating the effectiveness of the rewrite. Writing skills are just one of those areas that are difficult to assess in elearning because there isn't always a finite number of correct ways to rewrite something (especially for longer strings of text), and the level of "correctness" can be somewhat subjective. If you are wanting to strictly focus on word count, though, maybe you could embed an online word counter like this one as a web object? That way learners could at least see how their rewrite compared to the original in terms of count. And then maybe you could follow that up by showing an effectively rewritten paragraph, so they could learn by example.

Daniel Brigham

Thanks, Jeanette, for helping me think through this. Perhaps I could use the word counter with "compare your version with this" feedback. I guess the only small trick would be to make sure they could see their version as one of the viable revisions pops up. Doable I'm sure. I'll post a rough draft so you can see.

Kai ...

Great as always Jeanette! I have some serious problems with variables. Not only, which ones to use, but more when to use them properly. Could I perhaps have the source file for this cute tomato interaction to play with it (need some distraction from hurricane Sandy on my door step)? Also, maybe we should start a thread with files for all the possible variables and how they are used?

Jeanette Brooks

Hi Karen, hope you're doing okay through that crazy storm! If your electricity's still on and you're still wanting to do a little experimenting with variables, this page is a good starting point, with a few links at the end to explore. You might also like to take a look at these two tutorials, which show examples of using text variables. Stay safe!

Kai ...

Jeanette Brooks said:

Hi Karen, hope you're doing okay through that crazy storm! If your electricity's still on and you're still wanting to do a little experimenting with variables, this page is a good starting point, with a few links at the end to explore. You might also like to take a look at these two tutorials, which show examples of using text variables. Stay safe!


Thanks Jeanette! We are one of the lucky few and just trying to get through tonight. NY is a public transportation city, so we are all stranded.

I have already looked at the basic level one, but when it comes to the nitty gritty as to when and how to employ the variable? Creating the reference, knowing in what oder etc...these are just many questions that plague me. As mentioned maybe we should start a thread or forum or even how to guide or to dos etc.....I watch all the things that you guys create when we write in and am trying to apply it, which I am still working on

Question though regarding concepts: Like this thread - The lady wrote in and mentioned what she wanted done, you took her explanation and came up with your own creative way of expressing the solution. I like this and that is where I am stuck trying to create concepts to apply these different ways of creating interactivity.

...sigh!

Jeanette Brooks

Karen E said:

Thanks Jeanette! We are one of the lucky few and just trying to get through tonight. NY is a public transportation city, so we are all stranded.

 Question though regarding concepts: Like this thread - The lady wrote in and mentioned what she wanted done, you took her explanation and came up with your own creative way of expressing the solution. I like this and that is where I am stuck trying to create concepts to apply these different ways of creating interactivity.


Glad to hear you're safe, Karen!

You mentioned your feeling of being "stuck trying to create concepts to apply these different ways of creating interactivity"... here's what I'd recommend. Rather than try to find use-cases for all the cool features in Storyline, focus instead on what you want your learners to learn, accomplish, or practice during your course. Then describe that in the forums, and the community can help you think of some ways that you could use Storyline to create an interaction or learning experience that will meet your goals. A great place to start a new thread for a discussion like that is in the Building Better Courses forum...there are all sorts of creative folks here who can help you brainstorm some really neat ways to build meaningful interactivity! It's one of the things I love about this community. There are always great ideas flowing.

Talia  Taylor

Hello, 

I tried inserting variables as mentioned in the tutorial and am having some problems with getting the clicks per oval to be counted in the %found% in the "You've found...". Also, although I've set limits on the number of clicks to be counted per oval, the %found% reference is still not acknowledging the limits. Can you please assist? 

Jeanette Brooks

Hi there Talia,

In your file, it looks like there are some differences in your states and triggers, as compared to the file shown in the tutorial. In the tutorial, I used only a "Visited" state to show the checkmark on the tomato, and no "Selected" state.

So, to make your file behave like the one shown in the tutorial, I'd first recommend checking your states panel for each clickable shape, to make sure the shape has just a Normal and Visited state (and remove any Selected states). Use the Visited state to display the checkmark. 

Then, scroll through your trigger panel to make sure that each shape has a trigger to "Add 1.00 to Found when the user clicks, if the oval's state is not equal to Visited." 

Hope that helps!