Publishing advice

I'm 80% complete in developing my first course and of course as a newbie, have made some tactical errors along the way!  Here's my situation and hoping to get best practice advice from the vets.

1. Audio disappears when publish, which I think is either b/c I had to disable and enable the ribbon (articulate kept crashing) or is b/c I have been publishing versions, renaming the published folder rather than writing over. Am now not entirely sure which of the ppta files has audio.  I've got several ppta versions and the published folder is different than development folder. Do they need to all be together? Is there a way of identifying which ppta file has audio? I am ok with re-recording the narration, since it was not a huge # of slides, but want to publish the right way so I don't end up with this again. I was publishing and sharing via dropbox with client in another city, but she needs to hear the audio! All other audio (imported videos, engage interactions) work fine. Will be delivering all to client at end of project and want to minimize technical difficulties that they may face in the future (obviously).

2. Versioning - I realize that I should have had a more defined process to manage versions, could others share with me how they set up their projects (file structure) and how they share published version with external clients during development process.

3. The course has been developed tfor the learner to complete over period of weeks, not hours as it provides content but guides them through a number of offline activities. I was toying with the idea of having separate mini-courses, but realize this will make it harder for them to move back/forth in content. Any advice on what's best practice here?

Thanks for your input - am embarking on another Articulate project in the fall and would like to apply some lessons learned from this project to the next.  Would be great to have checklists, tips, templates and any other advice anyone wants to give me to help manage the process of development. 

Holly

3 Replies
Justin Wilcox

Hi Holly. Here's an article that should help you reconnect the PPTA file and your PowerPoint file:

http://www.articulate.com/support/presenter09/kb/?p=643

Here are some tutorials on best practices for managing project files:

http://community.articulate.com/tutorials/products/project-management-tips.aspx

The best way to share a published version is to put it online and provide a link. I would not recommend delivering content offline simply because it won't work as expected due to security reasons. If you do need to deliver something offline, publish for CD and make sure they launch the presentation via the Launch_presentation.exe file.

There are many recommendations online about length of courses. A common number that is often thrown around is to keep a presentation around 30 minutes because the efficacy of a course decreases the longer it gets. Basically, a presentation shouldn't be so long that a person wouldn't be able to complete it in one viewing.

If you wanted to have a longer presentation, I would consider using levels to break up the presentation into manageable chunks:

http://community.articulate.com/tutorials/products/applying-levels-to-slides-in-the-outline-tab.aspx

Justin Wilcox

Hi Holly. I would look for the old-ppta file that is the largest. That would probably be the one that contains all of your audio. Rename that one and see if that corrects the missing audio issue. If it doesn't, you simply want to continue renaming the PPTA files until you find the one that contains your audio.