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10 Tips for Getting Started in E-Learning

imgrestop10.jpgDo you remember your first E-Learning project?  You know what I mean, the one that started it all?  Some of you are sitting there reading this with a smile on your face as you laugh at the thought of stumbling your way through your first project.  We’ve all been there.

And that is what this post is all about.

So, in an effort to ease the pain of new beginnings, I’ve put together a little list.  One that I hope will help you on your journey as you get started in the crazy and often frustrating world of E-Learning.

This list certainly doesn’t cover everything – no mere blog post could, but its a great place to start and will hopefully give you a few new things to think about as you put together your own E-Learning new initiative.

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The Burning E-Learning Question: Does Slide Count Matter?

1158070_876226201.jpgAs I sit down to write this post I’m thinking back on my long lost college days.  Specifically I’m thinking about sitting through Dr. Holland’s endless marketing theory class and his love for all things PowerPoint.  See, Dr. Holland (name changed to protect the not so innocent) only taught night classes.

This was both good and bad.  Good because you only had to go one night a week.  Bad cause you then had to make yourself sit there and pretend to pay attention for the entire 2+ hours that he droned on … and on … and on. (more…)

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Weblearning 9.63 New Features

whats_new.gifWeblearning 9.63 will be released this week (end of November 2011) — sort of.

First, we will be putting in on the Demo system (demo.atrixware-online.com) for about a week while we iron out any last remaining bugs.

After that, new sign-ups will get the new build, and those owning an Enterprise/Enterprise Gold/Enterprise Platinum system that host the system on their own servers will be offered access to the new build.

Existing hosted customers without customizations will get their systems migrated one-at-a-time to the new build (and consequently during the migration will be moved to a new and improved server hosted over at liquid-web). This will be a process – likely to take about a month to get every system moved. After these are complete, we will move the customized systems over one-by-one.

(more…)

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Distance Learning … Old School Style!

1185429_13825221.jpgI’ll admit, I can be a bit of a pessimist.  Not in a “glass is half full” kind of way but more in a “been there, done that, got the t-shirt” kind of way.

It’s just hard to shock me, and even harder to show me something new and different.

Well, I stand here before you today as a changed soul.

Why you ask?  Because a good friend managed not only to shock me recently, but to shake me right down to the center of my E-Learning core.

It all started with a phone call.  “You’ve got to see this!

See what?” I ask as I lean back in my chair, kicking a stray foot up onto the desk in front of me.

There aren’t words.“  Was the answer I received.

(more…)

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3 Ways E-Learning Will Look Different in 2013

1276359_74191928.jpgRemember what it was like to be little?  To be just another kid hanging out in the neighborhood and dreaming about what the future would look like?  Yeah, those were the days.  I don’t know about you, but I was pretty sure that the Jetsons were on to a thing or two!

Well my friends, the future is now.  We have arrived, not just into the next century, but into the second decade of the next century and its time for us to take a closer look at what that means to the would of E-Learning as a whole.

We may not be cruising around in flying cars just yet, but we do have a few extremely impressive new resources ready and waiting for us to both explore and incorporate.  So, without further ado, I give you E-Learning….the 2013 version!

(more…)

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The Apple Effect on E-Learning

1359351_76562943.jpgI remember my first Apple.  Well…it wasn’t mine per say, but it did grace the dusty back table of my fourth grade classroom and I lived for those scant 15 minutes a day spent creeping my way down the Oregon Trail.   I ruled that trail!

But that was it.  That is the single Apple related memory of my childhood.  And even beyond.  If we are being completely honest the idea of Apple as a brand didn’t even cross my mind again until the first iPod ads started working their way in front of my eyes.

Can I admit that they worked? 

I couldn’t wait to get my hands on one of those shiny white boxes of goodness! (more…)

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Tips for Adding the Right Images to Your E-Learning Content

1083507_59176087.jpgWho doesn’t like pictures?  I like pictures.  Pictures are fun.  They add interest, they add depth and they are able to say a whole heck of a lot more than I am at a fraction of the word count.

Sounds like a win/win situation, right?  Well, it is .. but only if we are talking about the right pictures!

After all, this is not a one kind fits all kind of thing.  Not in the least.  I mean,  if a picture is going to shout out a 1000 words then you want to make extra sure that you know exactly what those words are going to be!

In short, you want this images you choose to enhance the quality of your E-Learning environment rather than (more…)

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How to Insert a YouTube Video into Slidepoint

Here is a tutorial (created using Slidepoint) that shows you how to insert a YouTube video into a Slidepoint presentation:



What is SlidePoint? In short, SlidePoint enables you to visually create and assemble visually stunning, flash-like e-learning presentations, complete with images, text, video, narrations, and even animation effects – all online, and the end result does not require flash! You can, of course, integrate flash videos if you wish (as well as YouTube videos). You can use Slidepoint in your Weblearning LMS system, or as a stand-alone service here.

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The Weblearning LMS is a powerful, budget-friendly, easy-to-use Online E-Learning System for authoring, managing, and tracking online learning presentations and tests (including your E-Learning Lessons). You can read the brochure, or to try it FREE, go to the Weblearning E-Learning System Sign-up Form.

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To Do or Not To Do … Should an Educator Blog?

960692_93021290.jpgTo blog…or not to blog?  As the title suggests it poses quite the perplexing question.  After all, as educators our blogs have the potential to both affect our students as well as offer them a type of behind the scenes glimpse into our minds.

But is that a good thing?

Do we really want to open ourselves up to that type of scrutiny and, in doing so, invite the dialogue that comes hand-in-hand with any type of public forum?

I think so.

In fact, I think that being an educator makes the reasons to blog more important, more interesting and even more compelling.  It allows us to express ideas and open conversations that wouldn’t be possible otherwise.  It allows us to share our voice.  Now, let’s talk about why we should…..

Reasons Educators Should Blog:

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SlidePoint for Weblearning LMS To Be Released

We are just about ready to release our newest plug-in for the Weblearning LMS – called SlidePoint.

The best way to describe it is this – it’s like an online version of PowerPoint geared specifically towards e-learning.

In short, SlidePoint enables you to visually create and assemble visually stunning, flash-like e-learning presentations, complete with images, text, video, narrations, and even animation effects – all online, and the end result does not require flash! You can, of course, integrate flash videos if you wish (as well as YouTube videos).

Another cool benefit is – your presentations will also run on mobile devices.

Here is a screen shot of the SlidePoint Editor:

1.png

We expect SlidePoint to be available in the next several weeks. In the meantime, here is a sample presentation I created with the (internal) beta version of SlidePoint – not the greatest presentation ever created, but a light sampling of some stuff you can do (and as it’s being delivered outside of a course, the save/exit button doesn’t function):



Here is another sample presentation
..that demonstrates a custom button bar, as well as the ability to resize and scale the presentation like you can with videos (even though it is not a video): http://bit.ly/rrCVXq



..and this sample presentation talks about some advanced animations like rotate, skew and scale – and does so while advancing automatically from slide to slide (like a video): http://bit.ly/nsocRu

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The Weblearning LMS is a powerful, budget-friendly, easy-to-use Online E-Learning System for authoring, managing, and tracking online learning presentations and tests (including your E-Learning Lessons). You can read the brochure, or to try it FREE,  go to the Weblearning E-Learning System Sign-up Form.

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Checklist for Developing Strong E-Learning Content

815492_computer_frustration.jpgDo you ever feel like you’re just not on your game?  Like the stars just aren’t aligning and nothing is coming together the way you had envisioned?

It happens to the best of us.  Some days every word I type seems to drip with wisdom and wit, while others leave me scratching my head as I struggle to spell the word “who“!

But here’s the deal.  I never sit down planning on creating a bad E-Learning initiative.  Though honestly?  It happens!  There are times when I’m just not on my game and things just don’t come together like I want them to. (more…)

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Is it Time to Say Yes to Virtual Classrooms?

990536_37770166.jpgIn the world of E-Learning, no issue seems to be hotter than that of the virtual classroom.  The debate, on both sides of the table, is as to which side offers more benefit to its participants and which option is able to facilitate a higher level of learning.

Can you guess where I stand?

But this post isn’t really about my own personal opinion.  It’s about the reality that for a variety of reasons, virtual is the wave of the future.  Travel costs are up and revenues are down, meaning that for many companies on-site training initiatives are being forced to evolve and change along with the rest of the organization. Plus, as companies are changing, cutting back and installing less bodies in a single geography, they are having to rethink how they approach their workforce.  On site training is no longer realistic in many cases and definitely not cost effective. (more…)

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Study Mode Quizzes Now Available in Weblearning LMS

Here is a short video that shows a preview of our new Study Mode Quiz plug-in for Weblearning LMS – just released as I write this. As always, our LMS learning modules are designed to work on mobile devices (meaning, they do not use Flash).

In this case, if you are one of our Test Pro Developer customers, the study mode quiz should seem familiar – since Test Pro Developer has had the ‘Practice Mode’ tests for quite some time – and we have used those as our model for this plugin. So, if you are looking to move your users from Windows Desktop Software learning to Online Learning, and want to give them a similar experience, you can now leverage Weblearning, with this Study Mode Quiz plugin (as well as the recently released Flash Card Plugin which mimics Test Pro Developer’s Flashcard mode).

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The Weblearning LMS is a powerful, budget-friendly, easy-to-use Online E-Learning System for authoring, managing, and tracking online learning presentations and tests (including your E-Learning Lessons). To try it FREE, go to the Weblearning E-Learning System Sign-up Form.

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Flashcards Plugin for Weblearning LMS – Preview

Here is a short video that shows a preview of our new Flashcards plug-in for Weblearning LMS – which should be available very soon (a few weeks). Despite all the fancy animations going on, the Flashcards plug-in is pure HTML, so it is mobile-learning compatible (phones, tablets).

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The Weblearning LMS is a powerful, budget-friendly, easy-to-use Online E-Learning System for authoring, managing, and tracking online learning presentations and tests (including your E-Learning Lessons). To try it FREE,  go to the Weblearning E-Learning System Sign-up Form.

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Leveraging Subject Matter Expertise into Effective E-Learning

1340442_12468964.jpgBuzz words….gotta love them.  They grow and stretch until it seems like they take on a life of their own as they work their way into every day conversation.

But what do they really mean?  Sure, we all use them, they’re catchy and a bit fun, but how often do we really take a deeper look into what we are saying and how these phrases apply to real world situations?

Such as the term, “Subject Matter Expert.”  Have you ever taken the time to sit down and think about what it means to be considered a Subject Matter Expert?  You could start by saying that it means you are good at something; that you have a talent and maybe even a strong skill set in a certain area.  But I think that’s a bit bland if you truly want to label either yourself or even someone else to be an “expert.”

(more…)

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LMS Plug-in Development Inside Look

boring_presentation.jpgThings are extremely busy here at Atrixware E-Learning Solutions these days – across all departments. I thought I’d provide you with a sneak peek into the product development happenings (at the risk of being boring for some), and give you some information on some cool Weblearning LMS plug-ins (currently available plug-ins are here) we are readying for 2011 release.

Flash Cards
This is a new module type that can co-exist with the learning presentations, practice quizzes, and graded quizzes you can already create inside of your Weblearning LMS account. This plug-in will enable you to create online flashcard style learning modules, where users can view questions on the front of a card, and then flip the card to view the answer.

(more…)

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Great Ways to Prevent Cheating on Online Quizzes

imgres.jpgDelivering Online Quizzes is becoming more and more common, so here are 5 great ways to help prevent cheating and ensure the user answers are their own.

Shuffle the Question Order

This is a no-brain-er. By doing this, you make sure that passing the quiz is not a simple list of letters (like 1-a, 2-c, 3-b, 4-b, etc). Most quiz authoring software (including our Weblearning E-Learning System as well as our Online Quiz Maker System) enable you to do this.

(more…)

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How to Extract Text from Images so You Can Edit the Text

I can’t tell you how many times I have come across this scenario: Our users have content as a PDF, or as Images, but not the source document so they can edit it. They essentially have to re-enter all the text – yikes!

Well, here is a handy tip to save you (and them) the grief. (more…)

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Importing Questions using the Import Utility

One of the most frequently addressed questions we come across is on the topic of importing questions into our Quiz/Test software and Weblearning application.  More often than not, the trouble lies within the formatting for the text file itself.  In this article, I’m going to show you how to properly format your questions and load them into the Import Utility so that they can easily be imported into our software.

Before we get started, it’s important to note that the Import Utility only allows you to import Multiple Choice/Response style questions. Any other types of questions (Fill-in-the-Blank, Essay, Pick List, etc.) will need to be added in manually.

The first step is to launch the Import Utility itself. Depending on the type/version of the software your using the process for doing this may vary. In most cases, you can launch the Import Utility by going to the Questions area of the quiz/test you are currently working on and locating the Import link, bringing up the Import Wizard.

On the first step of the Import Wizard, where you would normally select the .txt file you would like to import questions from, there is a link that reads Launch the Import Utility (click here).

In some cases, you can launch the Import Utility by going to the Tools menu at the top and selecting Question Import Utility. In Weblearning, you can launch the import utility by following the instructions in the Import section of the Questions & Slides tab.

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This will launch the Import Utility, which allows you to open the text file containing the questions you would like to import, and format the text file into the proper format for importing.

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Each question that you import should follow the 11-line import format. The first line must contain the question text, followed by a Hard Return, then a blank line (if your question or answer text contains line feeds/carriage returns, replace then with the following markup prior to importing:  [br] ). The next 5 lines are answers A-B-C-D-E, each followed by a Hard Return.  If a question has less that 5 answers, enter a blank line (Hard Return) for each missing answer. After the 5 answers, another blank line should follow. Next, the explanation should follow, then followed by a hard return, and then 2 blank lines.

Each question immediately follows the previous question. Here is the format (the prefixed numbers are there for example only):

01: QUESTION 1 TEXT
02:
03: ANSWER A
04: ANSWER B
05: ANSWER C
06: ANSWER D
07: ANSWER E
08:
09: EXPLANATION
10:
11:
12: QUESTION 2 TEXT
13:
14: ANSWER A
15: ANSWER B
16: ANSWER C
17: ANSWER D
18: ANSWER E
19:
20: EXPLANATION
21:
22:

So let’s assume I already have a text file with a few of my questions, answers, and explanations already saved and I would like to import those questions. My text file will more than likely look something like this:

5-25-2009-12-07-34-pm.jpg

First, I’ll need to open my file using the Import Utilty. To do this,  select File > Open Existing Text File from the top menu and then browse your hard drive until you find the .txt file you would like to import. When I open my text file in the Import Utility for the first time, it’s going to look like this:

5-25-2009-12-14-33-pm.jpg

As you can see, the questions from my text file do not match the 11-line import format. To verify that the lines are off or to view what types of errors I may have in my text file, I can click the Preview tab at the top to get  a question by question analysis of exactly what (and more importantly how) questions will be imported.

5-25-2009-12-40-25-pm.jpg

As you can see I have multiple errors in the layout of my .txt file, but just in case if I couldn’t tell immediately, the Import Utility will notify me with a popup alerting me to any glaring errors it might detect.  In my case. here are the errors:

First and foremost, both of my questions are using more than one line, when they should only be using one line.  In my second question, the explanation is also using more than one line when it should be only using one line. Also in the second question, I only have four answers (which is OK) but I have not left a blank line where the 5th answer would normally be. In fact, I’m missing a second blank line after both explanations as well. All of these things together are causing my question errrors.

For instance, the importer is looking for the first choice on my first question on line 5. However, it’s finding the last word of my question instead. After I go back and correct the formatting (moving all question text to one line, making sure I have the proper number of blank lines including blank lines for items I won’t be using, and making sure my explanations are only on one line) my format will look like this:

5-25-2009-12-46-58-pm.jpg

As you can see I have corrected all my errors, and now the data on the right (in white) lines up correctly with a blue rows to the left.  From this view it looks as though I’ve managed to remove all the errors in formatting. However, just to make certain I’ll click on the Preview tab again to see what errors might be found:

5-25-2009-12-50-21-pm.jpg

This time around, I did not recieve any popups notifying me of any errors, and I only see one warning sign.  In this case, the warning sign is alerting me that I have not entered any text for the 5th answer of my second question – which I did intentionally so it appears all is well.

The last thing I’ll need to do is denote which answer is actually the correct answer. To mark an answer as correct, I’m going to prefix it with [*]. Once I return to the software and actually import my formatted text file, that’s the prefix I will use to denote the correct answer in the Import Wizard. If my question has more than one correct answer (in the case of a Multiple Response style question), I only need to prefix all of the correct answers with [*]. Once I’ve prefixed my answers, my Import Utility screen will look like this:

Note: This step can be skipped, however if no prefix is found the Import Wizard will automatically use the first answer as the correct answer.

5-25-2009-1-13-02-pm.jpg

Now that my text file is in the correct format, it’s time to save my text file again so that it may be used by the Import Wizard. To do this,  select File > Save This File to Disk from the menu at the top and select the location and filename where you would like to save your formatted text file.

5-25-2009-1-15-52-pm.jpg

Once my .txt file is saved, I’m ready to return to the software and follow the steps of the Import Wizard, using my newly formatted text file to easily import questions, answers, and explanations directly into the software.

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Using Atrixware Quiz Management Service with Test Pro Developer

Atrixware Quiz Management Service is an easy online solution for emailing, exporting, viewing, and storing online quiz results published from our Quiz Publishing Software.  This article is going to show you how to publish a quiz using Atrixware Test Pro Developer that utilizes the Quiz Management Service.

To begin, I’m going to start Test Pro Developer and from the Develop tab I am going to select to create a New Test/Module.

10-1-2008-2-57-02-pm.jpg

This will bring up the Create New Test / Module window, where I can select the template that I would like to use for my test.  To use the Quiz Management Service, I want to select the QMS Test template from the Test tab and click the Next button.

10-1-2008-3-03-32-pm.jpg

I will now be prompted to enter a title for my quiz and optionally a summary.  Once I have entered my quiz title, I’ll click on the Finish button to create my QMS Test.  Clicking on the Finish button will bring up a dialog window asking me to enter my email address.  If I already have a Quiz Management Service account, I want to enter the email address I use to login to my account.  If I haven’t yet used the Quiz Management Service, I can simply enter my email address and my account will be created for me the first time a student completes my quiz.

10-1-2008-3-07-34-pm.jpg

When a student completes my QMS Test, they will be prompted to enter their name and email address before they can recieve credit for the test.  By default, the screen a student would see prompting them to enter this information looks like this:

10-1-2008-3-09-54-pm.jpg

If I wanted to, I can edit the appearance of the page.  I can do this by going to the Develop tab, highlighting the test I created, and clicking on the Files & Resources tab from the top bar.  One of the files under the Files & Resource tab should have the filename qms_submit.txt.  By opening and editing this file, I can change not only the appearance of the page, but what information is collected from the student and submitted to the Quiz Management Service.

10-1-2008-3-19-26-pm.jpg

The qms_submit.txt file contains the HTML, CSS, and Javascript to render the form that the student sees and submit it to the Quiz Management Service.  Below I’m going to go over the different parts of the file to give you a better understanding of how I could customize it.

Javascript Validation 

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The Javascript Validation function above checks the values entered for the Student Name and Student Email. If you wanted to add more input fields to the form you could add validation for more form fields.

CSS (For what the student sees)

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Here you can easily change the appearance of the form the student sees without actually changing the form itself.  For example, if you wanted to change the size of the font of the word IMPORTANT: , you could change font-size: 10pt;  to font-size: 14pt; under .style2.  Or if you wanted to change the color of the text from black to green you could add color: #00FF00; inside of .style1.

CSS (For the report that is emailed to you & stored in the Quiz Management Service)

10-1-2008-3-43-49-pm.jpg

Here you can easily change the appearance of the report that is included in the email sent to you when a student completes the test, as well as is stored in the Quiz Management Service.  By editing the CSS here, you can change the font type, color, size, and weight for the report headings, question text, answer text, result text, correct answer text, and the explanation text (in that order top-bottom). 

HTML (For the report that is emailed to you & stored in the Quiz Management Service)

10-1-2008-3-49-59-pm.jpg

In this section of the file you can customize the report that is being sent to you via email and being stored by the Quiz Management Service.  Not only can you change the layout of the report, but you can also add additional information to your report gathered from PowerScript.  You could easily add values for things such as <% Score.GetPassingScore %> or <% Score.GetRoundedValue %> to add the passing score for the test and students rounded score. 

Using values you set via PowerScript, you could pass information about class, subject, category, test version, or almost anything else you could imagine.

Another powerful option for customization that Test Pro Developer gives me is the ability to configure whether or not the student sees the report I set up in the section above or if they see a custom message upon completion of the test.  To edit this option or customize the message displayed to the student, I’ll need to go in a edit the PowerScript for my test.

With the QMS Test I created still highlight, I want to select the PowerScript tab from the top menu and then click on the Open Full Editor link in the Task Panel.

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In the PowerScript Code Editor I want to use the scrollbar on the right hand side to scroll down until I see the section of code entitled QMS Values.

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There are three values I can change by editing this section of code.  The first is qms_account, which is the email address I entered when creating my QMS Test where I wanted the results to be sent.  The second value I can edit is show_results.  If show_results is set to true, then upon completing the test, my students will see the full report I set up after they have submitted their test score.  If show_results is set to false, the student will instead see the message stored in the last value I can edit, the response value.

The response value is the message displayed to the student upon completing their quiz instead of the full report.  By default it is a generic message, but using HTML I can customize the message to match the rest of my test.

For example, if I set response equal to “<font size=’3′ face=’Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif’>Your Results have been submitted. Click <b><font color=’#FF0000′>CLOSE</font></b> to finish.</font”, then the message the student sees would look like this:

Your Results have been submitted. Click CLOSE to finish.

Or if I set response equal to “<font color=’#0099CC’ size=’3′ face=’Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif’>Your</font><font color=’#004080′ size=’3′ face=’Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif’> Results <font color=’#0099CC’>have</font> been <font color=’#0099CC’>submitted</font>. Click <b><font color=’#66FFCC’><em>CLOSE</em></font></b> to <font color=’#006699′>finish</font>.</font”, the result would look like this:

Your Results have been submitted. Click CLOSE to finish.

As you can see, Test Pro Developer offers a nearly unlimited amount of customizations when it comes to the results that it uses along with the Quiz Management Service.  After I have distributed my test and a student has completed it, I can click on the Quiz Management tab and login to the Quiz Management Service using the email address I chose to have my results sent to.  By default, the username and password for the Quiz Management Service is the email address I entered when publishing my quiz.

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Export into a PowerPoint Quiz

One of the new features in Test Pro Developer 9 is the ability to export test questions (multiple choice and true/false) into PowerPoint.

A small note – this export works only if you have PowerPoint installed on your system.

To begin, select a test, and then click the EXPORT option on the task panel:

image1.png

Choose the PowerPoint Export option from the list:

image2.png

The PowerPoint Quiz Properties screen will appear:

image3.png

From here, you will be able to configure various settings for the output, such as design template, prefixing, response text, and a few others.

Spend a few minutes configuring the export, and then click the CONTINUE button once you have it set up. After a few seconds (or minutes if you have a lot of questions), the slides will appear inside of PowerPoint.

In my example shown below, I choose the ‘green fade’ design template:

image4.png

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Creating Dynamic Questions and Answers

Did you know that if you are distributing ELearning Packaged Tests or using the LAN based testing components, you can create question text and choices that contain dynamic (changing) values?

Here is a simple example. Consider this Quiz Question:

Dave has 2 apples. Jane has 1 apple. How many apples do they have total?

Suppose we want to change the names each time. Suppose we want to change the TOTAL # apples each time. We can do both – so let’s get started.

First, go to the question wizard, and pick BASIC STYLES > MULTIPLE RESPONSE:

image0011.jpg

Click ADD QUESTION, and the Question entry wizard will appear. Enter the question text, and (for this example) 4 choices:

image0021.jpg

Click NEXT (to save the question), and then close the Question Wizard form. Your new question should be listed in the question list.

Now, if you want the names Dave and Jane to be dynamic (meaning, they will be different each time), first double-click the question to open it up in the Question Editor, click the VIEW CODE tab, and click APPLY. When you click APPLY, you will be able to enter some PowerScript code. This is where we will define the ‘pool’ of names we will use. Enter the following code:

' Set Up Name Choices and Variables
ExecuteGlobal("Dim name1, name2")
'
' Create Possible Names
name1_choices = Array("Bob", "Dave", "Steve", "Joe")
name2_choices = Array("Alice", "Jane", "Mary", "Lisa")
'
' Pick a Randon Name for Each One
For i = 0 To Second(Time)
name1 = name1_choices( int(rnd(1)*4) )
name2 = name2_choices( int(rnd(1)*4) )
Next

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Now, click the QUESTION/CHOICES tab, and click the FULL EDITOR button. Highlight the word Dave in the editor, and then click the INSERT DYNAMIC VALUE button:

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Enter name1 into the blank and click OK. Notice that the name Dave has been replaced with <%name1%>.

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Follow the same steps for Jane (highlight Jane, click insert dynamic value) – this time enter in the phrase name2 and click OK. Your question should look as follows:

image0091.jpg

Click SAVE on the FULL EDITOR, and you will be returned back to the Question Wizard. Now click the PREVIEW QUESTION tab and then click COMPILED PREVIEW. If you do it a few times, you should see that the names change each time:

image011.jpg

Changing the ANSWER is a bit more complex. The reason is, we need to make sure that each of the incorrect/detractor answers are never the same value as the correct answer. In our example, we have used the values 2, 5, and 7 as detractor values, so we never want those values to be the correct value.

Keeping that in mind, let’s go back to the code editor (VIEW CODE tab), and modify the code as follows:

' Set Up Name Choices and Variables
ExecuteGlobal("Dim name1, name2, value1, value2, correct_value")
'
' Create Possible Names
name1_choices = Array("Bob", "Dave", "Steve", "Joe")
name2_choices = Array("Alice", "Jane", "Mary", "Lisa")
value1_choices = Array(2,3,4,5)
value2_choices = Array(6,7,8,9)
'
' Pick a Randon Name for Each One
For i = 0 To Second(Time)
name1 = name1_choices( int(rnd(1)*4) )
name2 = name2_choices( int(rnd(1)*4) )
value1 = value1_choices( int(rnd(1)*4) )
value2 = value2_choices( int(rnd(1)*4) )
Next
'
' Set Correct Value
correct_value = value1 + value2

Next, go to the QUESTION/CHOICES tab. You can (if you want) go to the FULL EDITOR and replace the numbers using the INSERT DYNAMIC DATA button like I showed you previously when you did it for the names, or, you can just type it in. Either way the end result should look as follows:

<%name1%> has <%value1%> apples. <%name2%> has <%value2%> apples. How many apples do they have total?

Since we are changing the values, we also need to make the ‘correct answer‘ dynamic. To do this, click the CHOICES A-H tab, and change the correct answer from ‘3‘ to <%correct_value%>.

image015.jpg

Our code will calculate the ‘correct-value’, and place it here.

Once again, click PREVIEW QUESTION and then COMPILED PREVIEW. Doing it several times will yield various names and values each time.

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Including a Video With a Question in Test Pro Developer

In this tutorial I will be discussing how to add a video in a question with Test Pro Developer.  First create a Learning Mode w/ Advanced Report Test by clicking Create a New Test > Enterprise > Learning Mode w/ Advanced Report.  After your test is created we will need to add your video to the project.  Select your test and click the configure button.

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Click the Other Resources tab, click the Open File Dependency Editor and click the Add button.

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Navigate to the location of your video file and click Add.  Click OK, Close twice and Save Changes to return to the Develop Tests window.

Next, we will need to create the HTML document that the video will be embedded into.  If you are familiar with HTML, you can further customize the HTML document as desired.  For this example, I will keep it very simple.  Open Notepad and paste the code below.

<embed src="testVideo1.avi" loop="false" autoplay="false" width="360" height="240"></embed>

You will need to change the video name, width and height in the code to the properties of your video.

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Save the file and name it what ever you would like with a file extension of .html (ex.  yourfilename.html).    Close the html file and Open Test Pro.

I will now add a question to our test by selecting the test and clicking the Add Question button.  Now click the Add a Question button in the questions area.

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Then click the + sign on the Multiple Option Style Variations question type and select Multiple Option – On Form HTML Exhibit.

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Enter your question/answers and click Next.  Test Pro will prompt you to add an html file for your question.  Navigate to the HTML file we just created, click OK then Done.

Now it is time to preview your questionSelect the question, click Edit Question > Preview Question > Complied Preview.  Your video will now appear in the question as shown below.

blog6_4.jpg

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Changing the End of Test Report in Test Pro Developer

In this article, I will be customizing the End of Test Report in Test Pro Developer.  You will need to have knowledge of HTML or an HTML program like FrontPage or Dreamweaver.

Note: This customization is not for the Standard Legacy Report.  You can remove the Standard Legacy Report by clicking Configure and unchecking the Show Standard (Legacy) Report Upon Completion of the Test box.

First you will need to create a Learning Mode w/Advanced Report test (Create a New Test > Enterprise Tab > Learning Mode w/Advanced Report).  Then we need to add a dependency file (the banner image) by selecting on the test and clicking the Configure button.

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Select the Other Resources tab and click the Open File Dependency Editor button.

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Click Add File and navigate to your banner image.

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After your file is added, click OK, Close, Close and Save Changes.  Now that our banner is included in the test, we want to modify our HTML report template.   To find the HTML report template follow the path below and open it in your HTML editor if desired. (you can open it in the text editor as well)

Note:  Your Application Data folder may be hidden.  To view this folder, click tools > Folder Options > View and select Show Hidden Files and Folders.

On Windows XP

C:\Documents and Settings\YOUR USER NAME\Application Data\Atrixware\Developer 8\Profiles\YOUR PROFILE NAME\Electronic\YOUR TEST NAME\aw-adv-report.txt

On Vista

Right-Click on your Desktop Shortcut and select Open File Location.  Click Profiles\YOUR PROFILE NAME\Electronic\YOUR TEST NAME\aw-adv-report.txt

Now I will link to my image by adding this line of code right below the <body> tag

&lt;img src="banner.gif" /&gt;

Note: Replace banner.gif with the name of your banner image

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I also want to remove the grey background, border and padding from the bold text by removing the style selected below.  I also want to add the text Your Results For before my test name.

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Save your file after you have modified your report template to your liking.  Open Test Pro and go to your Develop Tests tab.  Right click on your test and select Compile & Run > Standard Test.  Once your test opens, click End to see your new report.  If your banner image is too wide for the default size of the test window (like the image below), you will need to make a few modifications.

blog2_10.jpg

First find the line of code below and remove it (View/Edit Test Level PowerScript)

Browser.Move main.left, main.top, main.Width, main.Height 

Now with your cursor still in the same spot, paste the code below.

(under this line: FileTemplate.AppendFile finalFile, reportOutput)

‘ RESIZE AND CENTER THE REPORT WINDOW
ReportWidth = 830 * Screen.TwipsPerPixelX
ReportHeight = 600 * Screen.TwipsPerPixelY

LeftPosition = (Screen.Width – ReportWidth) / 2
TopPosition = (Screen.Height – ReportHeight) / 2
Browser.Move LeftPosition, TopPosition, ReportWidth, ReportHeight

Change reportWidth(currently 830)/reportHeight(currently 600) number to your width/height in pixels and click save.

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Change reportWidth(currently 830)/reportHeight(currently 600) number to your width/height in pixels and click save.

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You can preview your test from the code window by clicking the button below.

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Use Pooling in Test Pro Developer

In this article I will be discussing the use of rule scripts in Test Pro Developer.  The use of rules can be very helpful to select a number, type, weight etc. of questions in a test.  The most common rule used would be to select a certain number of questions from each category.    You also have a number of other rules you can use to filter your questions.  You can select the questions or the answers to contain specific text, by a script tag or by question weight.

I will start by creating a test that has multiple categories and varying score weights.  Now that the test is created, we can apply some Rule Scripts to it.  I want my test to contain 10 questions from the First Category, 15 from the Second Category and all questions from the Third Category.  To do this, select the test you are working with in the Develop Tests tab and click the Configure button.

1.jpg

Click the Question Configuration Tab and click the Select Questions with a Rules Script option box.  Click the Edit Script button then click the Open Wizard button.

2.jpg

Select 10 from the first drop down box, select the First Category from the second drop down menu and click Add and Continue.

41.jpg

The rule has been added so now we can continue to add the rules for the remaining two categories.  Once you have added your last rule click Add and Close.  Click Save then Save Changes.  I will run my test to make sure my rules have gone into effect by right-clicking on my test, selecting Compile and Run, then select Standard Test.

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Answer a few questions then click End to bring up your report.  The report will tell you how many questions you got correct out of the total number of questions in each category.  This is how we will know that our rules are working properly.

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So now that my rules are in place, I am going to make some modifications to them.  Select the test, click the Configure button and click the Question Configuration tab.  Click the Edit Script Button and click the Open Wizard button.  I want to have every question with a score weight of 9 to be included in the test.  Select All for the first drop down box, 9 for the last drop down box and click Add and Close.

I now want to change the Third Category to include only 1 question instead of all questions.  Click the Create Script Manually tab and you will see a list of the Rule Scripts we have added.  Find the Rule Script that says…

Rule
Match Category “Third Category”
Use All

and change it to…

Rule
Match Category “Third Category”
Use 1

71.jpg

Click Save then Save Changes

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Modifying Question Prefixes in Test Pro Developer

In this article, I will show you how to work with the question prefix setting for questions inside of Test Pro Developer. In my example, I will show you how to display each questions category above each question.

This is definately a more technical article than most, so I will attempt to describe everything as best I can.

Start by launching Test Pro Developer:

Step 1: Click on your Develop Tests tab and select the test that you would like to modify.
Step 2: Click the Tools button and select “View/Edit Test Level Powerscript

bselect_ps.jpg

Step 3: Once the code window is opened, copy and paste this code snippet: (Note: If you have code in this window already, it will be best to paste it below all existing code).

Sub OnShowQuestion
 qPrefix = "<strong><% Question.GetCategory(Question.GetCurrentNumber ) %></strong>"
 qPrefix = qPrefix & vbcrlf & vbcrlf & "<% Question.GetCurrentNumber %>. "
 Interface.Question_Prefix = qPrefix
End Sub

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Understanding the code

Sub OnShowQuestion/End Sub: These lines define the block of code that will execute when a question is shown. All code inside these two lines will execute prior to each question getting displayed – providing us with the opportunity to create the prefix each time.

qPrefix = : These two lines (starting with qPrefix =) are building our prefix. In this case the prefix consists of both dynamic and static text and content:

  • <strong></strong> tags surround the text we want to appear in bold (in my example, I have bolded the category).
  • “<% Question.GetCategory(Question.GetCurrentNumber) %>” represents the question category. Since each question may be in a different category, we get the category of the active question using the code above. The <% %> tags are a special case only used in this scenario – it’s too much to explain in this short article, but the important thing to know is that when assigning dynamic data to the question prefix, all dynamic data gets placed into quotes surrounded by these tags.
  • “<% Question.GetCategory(Question.GetCurrentNumber) %>” represents the question number itself (1, 2,3, etc). Since we are changing the default question prefix (which is just the question number by default), if we still want the question number to appear, we need to include it in our code. Again, the <% %> tags are used since the question number is dynamic (each question has a different number).
  • You see various & (ampersands) in the code. These simply concatenate all of the sections in quotes, and sections not in quotes, together as we build the prefix. If your entire prefix was in quotes, then we would not need to use these.
  • You see various vbCrLf text in the code – these represent a line feed + carriage return (in my example, to get the category on one line, and then the question 2 lines below that, I added to vbCrLf’s after the category to achieve the result).

Interface.Question_Prefix = : this is the line of code that assigns our prefix to the question.

Step 4: Click your preview button in your code editor to see the changes that you have made

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Step 5: Click Save and close your code editor

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Piracy Protecting your ELearning Software Packages

Here are to videos I have personally created to show two popular and easy to implement concepts. Note that these concepts can be combined, and are most effective when used in combination with activation technology.

This one shows how to set up a date limit for using your software.

This one shows how to limit the # times a quiz can be accessed.

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