This week I hosted Adobe Captivate Developer Anita Horsley in an eSeminar and was thrilled to learn a cool new tip. (Yup, even I didn’t realize that you could do this nifty little trick with your eLearning modules.)
Permit me to set the stage. You are building your latest learning module in Adobe Captivate. You know that the module is essentially four sections, one for each of three big topics and one for the final assessment. But it’s a long project, and you’ve got dozens, maybe even hundreds of slides. Every time you go to search for the start point of section 2 or three you find yourself scrolling the thumbnail section for days and days. Eventually you might have even tried tricks like putting in a blank slide or funny placeholder graphics just to be able to find that start of the section more quickly.
Or perhaps you have a module that is composed of lessons or chapters. It has a kind of index page for each unit, and there are many, many units. You’d like the table of contents to get smart about organizing these units, and give you a nested list of slides so that your learners can easily find any bit of content within a given unit.
Either way, this cool little tip is for you. You can easily group your slides in Adobe Captivate 7. Just SHIFT Select the slides you want to join to a common group, and then Command Click (Mac) or CRTL Click (Win) and chose Group-Create. This will create a group containing all of the selected slides. It will give the group a special property panel to let you select a group color, and to name the group. It will also collapse the group of slides into a single box, with a convenient drop down menu to let you open and close the group. (This will also make it a lot simpler to see your units, and navigate your project.)
The group can easily be expanded or contracted to reveal the collection of slides.
The created groups now condense dozens of slides into just a few – easily expandible – unit placeholders.
As illustrated here, the Table of contents automatically builds nested TOC entries for each unit.
You can label the slides either in the property inspector or in the Table of Contents (Skin editor) directly.
The property inspector for groups includes the option to set a special master slide for an entire group, the option to chose which color to select for a given group (the box that is drawn around group slides and the group preview thumbnail) and the name of the group. This group name will be used by the skin editor to name the unit slides, so you will want to name the groups properly.
Hopefully you’ll find this tip useful. Let me know. As always I’d love to hear from you – feel free to share your own tips and tricks, and your thoughts about this one in the comments section below.