"Intelligent" back branching?

Hi Guys -

I've had great luck here before...I'm hoping you guys will come through to save my butt again.

Here's the problem:

I am working on a training presentation which contains a normal linear course progression for the most part.  However, my client is requesting to add an optional section which is to be accessible from 5 different areas within the normal course.  I have accomplished this by adding a hyperlinked powerpoint shape at the desired locations which directs the user to the optional content. I have stored the optional content at the back-end of the presentation (essentially hidden from view), as to keep the navigation simple for the user.  

The problem is that my client wants the user to be able to click a link WITHIN the optional content to return to the exact page where the user clicked to enter the optional course branch. The main thing here, is that the client wants the user to be able to access this optional content from various points within the presentation, but doesn't want to leave in any shortcuts to allow the user to skip sections without first viewing the slides.  I have faked this functionality by creating 5 cloned versions of the optional content, each with a link pointing to the slide the user came from. Is there a way to reach the same result without creating 5 identical optional content sections?  Is there a way for the Presenter "Back" branching to know which slide the user was on before entering the optional content slide progression?

If I am to go with the "faked" solution, another concern of mine is that I would like to have the optional content hidden from the normal "Outline" navigation within the Presenter frame, as it's not really part of the global navigation.  Is it possible to hide slides from the Outline navigation?



16 Replies
Mel Aclaro

Hi Ryan,

I'll leave it for others to chime in on the question about "back branching" to a calling slide.  (I'd be interested, as well.)  But, I do have an answer to your second question.  

You can hide slides from the navigation menu from within Slide Properties.  Just right-click the slides you're interested in; a floating menu appears.  One of these options is "Hide In Navigation Panel."

Hope that helps.


Kayla Burtch

This might be super complicated... but if you create the content you are linking to as a seperate flash file, then have that flash file inserted as a flash object, moved slightly upwards (make sure there is no content in the top couple inches) with a hyperlink at the bottom that says "back" and hyperlinks to "last slide viewed"

That is the only way I can think to do it (that way the entire "content" they are linking to acts as if it were one slide, in order for "last slide viewed" to work.

Kayla Burtch

Oh...and also you could make a tabbed engage interaction, depending on what the content is.

If it initself is linear, publish your content seperately as its own presenter file...this will create an swf file for each slide...then make a "process" engage interaction as a tab, then insert each of the SWF files (slide one as 1 slide 2 as 2) as the "add media"

Jeanette Brooks

Ryan, have you thought about adding your optional section as an Engage interaction, and publishing it as a tab on your player? As long as you are using Standard View or No Sidebar VIew throughout your course, the content on the tab will be accessible from any slide. If users choose to look at it, it will drop down from the top bar of the player, and then the user can click close to roll it back up. When they do that, they'll still be on the slide from which they invoked it. Here's a good article that might help give you some ideas: http://www.articulate.com/blog/creative-ways-to-enrich-your-e-learning-with-toolbar-tabs/