Have you ever worked on a slide with so many objects that you found yourself struggling to click on the one you intended, or maybe spending countless hours adding animations or triggers to each individual item? There’s an easier way. Grouping objects in Storyline 360 is a handy feature that can help you stay organized and work more efficiently. Here are some of the commonly asked questions about working with grouped objects in Storyline 360.

1. When does it make sense to group objects? 

Working with numerous objects on a slide can start to feel overwhelming. Before you know it, your timeline and trigger panel become an endless list of objects and triggers, which can be time-consuming to manage. 

 

Declutter Your Timeline

Grouping objects together can help you work more efficiently. Look at these two timelines for the same course. 


Ungrouped

And there are still a ton of objects that aren’t visible without scrolling.



Grouped

Such a noticeable difference when the objects are grouped! 

The grouped version is clean and easy to manage. I can quickly show, hide, or lock objects in just a few clicks.

 

Keep Triggers at a Minimum 

Another benefit of grouping objects is that you can execute one action for an entire group of objects. This cleans up your trigger panel and makes it easier to hide triggers if you need to do some testing. 

Before:                                                          After:

Edit Multiple Objects Simultaneously

Grouping objects also allows you to edit, move, rotate, flip, or change other attributes all at once, as if they were a single object. 

You can also resize all the objects in the group while preserving the spacing between objects.

2. What’s the quickest way to group objects?

The most common way to group objects is by selecting the objects to group together, right-clicking, and choosing Group

 

But did you know there’s a faster way? You can save yourself a few clicks (and a lot of time) by using a keyboard shortcut. Simply hit Control + G (or Command + G on a Mac).  

3. How do animations work with groups?

When it comes to grouped objects and animations, you have two options:

Option 1: Apply animations to each object individually. 

When you want the objects in a group to animate at different times, you can add individual animations to each object. In the following example, you can see that I added animations to each object (noted by each ⭐) and then grouped them together. 

 

The following GIF illustrates what the above grouped object with individual animations looks like in action.

 

Option 2: Apply animations to the group as a whole. 

When you want to animate multiple objects all at once, group them together and then add an animation to the entire group. In the following example, I grouped the objects together and selected the Fly In animation (noted by the one ⭐ at the top left). 

The following GIF illustrates what a grouped object with one group animation looks like in action.

 

4. How do I troubleshoot animations with grouped objects?

Grouped objects aren’t animating as intended? It’s possible you’ve applied a mix of both animation options I shared above. This happens a lot if you’ve added animations to individual objects and then later decided to group those objects together and add a group animation. 

To figure out if that’s what’s going on, open the Animations tab and then click on each individual object in the group. Keep an eye on the Entrance, Exit, and Motion Path Animation options as you click each object. If you see an animation has been added to an object, remove it by selecting the drop-down arrow and clicking None or simply deleting the extra motion path. 

5. Can you add states to groups?

Storyline 360 has built-in states that allow you to change the appearance of an object (such as shapes and buttons) based on the learner’s action. States can only be added to individual objects, not grouped objects.  

However, you can still edit the states of the individual objects within a group by selecting each object and editing their states. Or you can first edit the states and then group them together. Check out this video tutorial on how to make a group of objects display their individual hover states.

Another option is to keep one object of the group on the slide, click Edit States, and paste the remaining objects in the Normal State. Check out this video tutorial on how to work with grouped objects in Storyline 360.

More Resources

For more information on working with grouped objects, check out these resources:

What questions or tips do you have about working with grouped objects in Storyline 360? Please share your ideas below. 

 

Want to try something you learned here, but don’t have Articulate 360? Start a free 60-day trial and come back to E-Learning Heroes regularly for more helpful advice on everything related to e-learning. 

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Jean-Christophe Goyette