Dear diary: My Articulate Storyline training experience

One of our newest ‘Omniplexers’, Ellie, recently took part in our   Articulate Storyline 360      4-day training course. Having wondered what was in store for her when she signed up to take the course, Ellie thought it would be a great idea to show you an insight into how she found the certified training course.

Dear diary…

Before the course

As soon as I’d booked my space on the course, I quickly realised that the training wasn’t held at Omniplex HQ, but at our training centre ‘The Farm School’. Although this is fairly close to our offices, I hadn’t been there before – so the joining instructions from our training co-ordinator were really helpful. These included all the information I’d need before attending; course location, accommodation, travel options, parking, course timings, dress code and food details are all explained which is helpful. I learn later that the joining instructions are built in Rise (part of the   Articulate 360 suite) and I’m impressed at the easy to follow format.

Within the joining instructions there are links to Workshop Files for Articulate Storyline 2, 3 and 360, depending on your version of software. I download those for Articulate Storyline 360 ready for Day 1 of the training.

Day 1

Training blogI arrive at the Farmschool at 8:30am on the first day. The course doesn’t start until 9 but I want to make sure that I find the building with time to spare (there are clear directions and when I arrive there’s only one possible place where the training could be, so even I can’t miss it!) I park in the carpark, which is right outside, and take in the beautiful setting: rolling hills, clear blue sky and the twittering of birds. Perfect.

On entering the Farmschool, I quickly spot some other delegates in the kitchen, helping themselves to tea/freshly brewed coffee and pastries. The atmosphere from the start is very welcoming.

The training is held in the upstairs ‘classroom’, which is a fairly large room with 12 tables set out in rows: two spaces per desk. On each desk is an Omniplex Training Resource Guide, containing everything that’s going to be covered over the next few days. I settle down at my desk, unpack my laptop and plug in to one of the many power stations available in the room.

Once everyone is settled, our trainer, Chris, begins. After we’ve all introduced ourselves and Chris has run through what’s going to be covered during the next few days, we start.

Chris gives us an overview of the Articulate tools covered in this learning: Storyline, Studio, Replay, Peek, Rise, Review, Content Library and Live. We’re asked to open the version of Articulate Storyline that we have on our laptops and Chris talks us through the user interface. This course is open to all abilities, so there are some of us that have never used Storyline before and some that are making courses already, but we all learn something new in the morning session.

Lunch is one of the best I’ve had on a training course: the chef in the kitchen explains the different options available to us (sausage rolls, sandwiches with vegetarian and meat fillings, fruit, crisps – the list goes on). A salad has been made up for a delegate with special dietary requirements – when I ask, he tells me that he’d replied to the joining instructions to let Omniplex know and they’d been more than happy to meet his requests, which I thought was thoughtful.

A lovely surprise is the homemade cake available. The chef is quick to tell us there’s a “new cake every day!” which gives us something extra to look forward to over the next few days. We all sit eating in small groups around the large room next to the kitchen until it’s time for the afternoon sessions to begin. We could have eaten outside at the picnic benches, overlooking the fields, had the weather been warmer…

For this first day, we’re all quite tentative – drinking in the information given to us. Amongst the topics covered are: using templates, adding characters, importing from PowerPoint, animations, audio,   states, layers and triggers. As part of the workshop files there are a couple of prepared exercises that we explore throughout the afternoon involving drag and drop interactions as well as video editing.

CAKE OF THE DAY: Chocolate brownies.

Day 2

I arrive at day two of the training course much less apprehensive than day one. I’m ready for another day of learning and really getting to grips with Articulate Storyline 360.

Chris tells us that in the second day of training we’re going to look slightly more in depth at what Articulate Storyline can offer – in the morning we explore assessments,   branched scenarios    and the different types of player available.

Chris also has assistance through the training course. Today’s assistance was from Elyse, an experienced user, from Omniplex’s eLearning division Cursim, ready to answer any questions or to provide assistance if we need it when working with the software. Elyse helped ensure that the less experienced users in the group kept up with the course content – which was hugely useful when we got to the branched scenario task.

I quickly realised that branched scenarios are a great way to let learners develop practical skills without the fear or risk of failure. It’s made up of the three ‘C’s’: the challenge, choice and consequence. However, creating these for the first time can be a little tricky, so Elyse’s help was really appreciated here.

During the afternoon session we learn about publishing our courses to Review, so that they can be shared with external bodies (even people who don’t have Articulate 360 can access content via this link – which really impressed the more experienced eLearning developers in the room). We also learn about Screen Recording and Publishing formats in the afternoon session.

CAKE OF THE DAY: Lemon slice.

Day 3

On the final day some of the attendees need to leave early to meet travel commitments, and Chris explains the she’s happy for us to refer to the handbook and work at our own pace if we’d rather. But we all follow along with her!

Today, we focus on slightly more advanced Storyline features:   motion paths, variables, sliders  and dials. Whilst we work through the exercises provided for us, Chris and Muhammad (our assistant for the day) answer any questions raised. Some of the queries are very technical, but this doesn’t faze either of them! One attendee says she needs “a Muhammad” on hand while getting to grips with the software: she was excited to hear that Omniplex have support contacts available all year round who can assist with any questions she might have, which puts her mind at rest.

As the day draws to a close and we all leave to make our way home, there are lots of smiles among the farewells. Our group has been lovely, and everyone has picked up ideas from one another. I feel much more confident with using Articulate Storyline.

CAKE OF THE DAY: Carrot cake.

Day 4

There is a fourth training session, which can be completed virtually or as an extra day at the Farmschool, which covers Rise, Content Library, Peek and Replay. This fourth day ensures you understand how each of the tools work together to create truly engaging, interactive eLearning.

On Friday afternoon all attendees receive an email from Chris answering a query that another delegate had voiced in Thursday’s training session – a very thoughtful touch, and a lovely way to round off my experience at the Open Enrolment training course.

Articulate certified training in the UK

We are the sole certified training partner of Articulate software in the UK, so you will not find better training anywhere else. If you’re interested in learning more about our Articulate 360,   Storyline   or   Studio  training courses, please   get in touch, we’d love to hear from you!