Freeform question, Incorrect answer: What branching to RE-DO it?

Dec 06, 2012

Hi folks --

I am making a series of free-form questions by using "convert to free-form."

However, I want to make it so that, when the user hits submit, and it's determined that they got the incorrect answer, then I simply want it to restart that very same slide, so they can keep hacking at it until they get it right.   And of course the thing that will happen when they get it correct is that they'll go to the next slide.

BUT, I can't find the configuration to tell it to zap them straight to that very same slide if they got it wrong.  When I go to edit the interaction (press the "edit drag and drop" button), then click "More" next to "INCORRECT" near the bottom only makes it possible to branch to Previous, Next, or any other side -- the one slide that is not available is this very same slide.

ALSO, playing with the "properties" gears that are at the right of my three Slide Layers (Main layer, Incorrect, and Correct) similarly don't seem to help.

What is the official, smart way to tell it to, after they Submit their answer, to make the user keep working on that very same question until they get it correct, at which point it moves on to the next slide?



15 Replies
Simon Perkins

Hi Eric

I sometimes find that I need free-form slides to reload from scratch too, and the most reliable way I've achieved this is to:

  1. Create a new blank slide (call it "Bouncer" for now) (this would be hidden in your menu too)
  2. Add a trigger to each relevant layer in your free-form slide that requires you to reload the question/interaction > this trigger should go to slide "Bouncer"
  3. On "Bouncer" slide add a trigger that goes immediately back to your free-form slide as soon as the timeline starts

This effectively bounces the learner back to the same question/interaction immediately (so you don't see the "Bouncer" slide) until such time as you have a trigger that sends them elsewhere.  Be sure to set up your "When revisiting" states on the free-form's base layer etc just to ensure everything appears as it should.

Others may have better ways of achieving this ...

Rebecca Fleisch Cordeiro

Hi Eric and Simon,

I'm sure you've thought of this, so can you tell me why you'd prefer not to use it?

On your freeform slide's incorrect layer, you could change the "hide this layer" trigger to instead "jump to slide", and the slide would be this very same slide. When you do this, the sidebar area on the left now shows a little blue circle above and to the left of the slide, to alert you that you're jumping to the slide itself - I guess in case this was done accidentally.

Eric Stephan

Ah ha! Rebecca's answer works perfectly!  Thanks so much.

You were polite to say "I'm sure you thought of this, but..."   ... The truth is, with various places offering the ability for branching to other slides located at different spots in the interface, that one way of doing it escaped my notice.

THANKS! perfect.  And nice that the little "circle back" graphic on the thumbnail reaffirms that it's configured correctly!


Simon Perkins

Hi Rebecca

It might be a SL bug (for me anyway) but I've found free-form slides don't reload properly using that method, hence "having" to resort to a "bouncer" slide.  I've played with all kinds of settings (re revisiting + layers) but not found anything reliable enough yet.  Will have another play the next time I need to do this.  Thanks for pointing out that it's working for you - it might just be one of those weird SL things

Helen Tyson

Hi Eric,

Rebecca's solution does work if you don't need the slide to reload, and Simon's idea is nice solution if you do, however antoehr approach would be to use the Unlimited Attempts option on the question form. 

When setting up the freeform, select Unlinited from the Attemps dropdown and a Try Again layer is created that displays rather than the Incorrect layer and as you are giving unlimited attempts it will keep you on the same slide until the user gets it right.

You can apply formatting to the Try Again layer to show feedback or not, and if you don'r want it to show at all set the Hide Layer trigger to fire at Timeline Starts. Although if you are going to keep a user on the same slide until they get it right it's probably a good idea to let them know what's happening so they don't simply click away at the Submit button thinking it's broken.


Eric Stephan

Helen's additional point came just in time.

I found that Rebecca's method was fine, but it had one major worry. Namely, it would make the slide repeat its audio narrative ... "what is the best bla bla??? drag the bla bla's over to the bla bla box..." over and over again, each time they didn't get it right. Would make the user go nuts. also, it was freezing the dragged pieces, and I didn't manage to fix that with the features to rever to saved versus initial state.

Helen's method seems to fix both. Awesome.  Someone should do a blog post on this "re-doing failed attempts methods"  ... since there are three ways of doing it.

I just wish that my "Try Again" layer didn't have its format scrambled for some reason. i will have to annoyingly manually fix all those Try Again layers on the slides I am making this change on.

THANKS -- this software continues to do a good job of anticipating the needs of these courses. you guys really did good design.


Eric Stephan

Have any of you seen an issue where that cool "try again" layer appears to be correctly using the "CLEAN" feedback master... BUT is forcing itself to use the variant that has zero grey box on the slide master?  so the items on that Try Again layer just float invisibly with no box behind them?   Would be nice to not have to manually fix that, but rather force it to use the grey-box variant of that master.

thanks all!!

Eric Stephan

OK.  Hi folks.  Very sorry to be bombing you with these endless replies.   My situation, though it has solved my main problem, has led me to a new problem about the Feedback Slide Masters that is my only remaining problem:

-- I was so happy with the Try Again layer, as it solved my problem.  BUT, I found that it had a fully transparent appearance, without the nice grey box behind its text and button.  SOOO, I went to the Feedback Master and found that if I toggled that "Hide Background Graphics" checkbox up in the ribbon, that nicely put the grey box back in behind the Try Again text/button.

-- BUTTTT, I then found that on ALL of my other slides in the deck where I had created new layers to handle various content needs, I found out that that silly empty grey box that was so perfect for the Try Again layer ... has now been placed on ALL those other layers I had created!

-- In short: how do I go to a given layer (for instance the regular content-needs layers that I had placed elsewhere in my slide) and tell it: Hey, Layer, don't take that subtype of the slide master that has the grey blank box background for your template... just be totally transparent apart from what you are told to display in this slide!!"   ... in other words, I don't know how to tell a layer to use this variant of the master, or that other one, etc.   Any ideas on that??? THANKS!! 

(I am sure you regret joining this thread)

Rebecca Fleisch Cordeiro

Eric Stephan said:

Have any of you seen an issue where that cool "try again" layer appears to be correctly using the "CLEAN" feedback master... BUT is forcing itself to use the variant that has zero grey box on the slide master?  so the items on that Try Again layer just float invisibly with no box behind them?   Would be nice to not have to manually fix that, but rather force it to use the grey-box variant of that master.

Hi Eric,

First, I'm not sorry to be part of this thread. I continue to learn a lot! And I had a "duh" moment when I read Helen's post about Try again. Of course! Tx, Helen.

Apologies for not understanding this, but when you say the "the items on the Try Again layer float invisibly with no box behind them" what do you mean? Do you mean the Text (Incorrect - That is incorrect. Please try again. - Try again) is NOT appearing inside the grey box? The reason I"m asking is because for me, by default, it DOES appear in the grey box. So I thought I'd start with that question.

For me, it would be nice to have a screenshot or something. But others may be able to help you out just by your description.

Eric Stephan

Hi all --

Actually, I've solved this new problem. Maybe I can finally bang the gavel on this thread.

My problem was that the Feedback master had two possible configurations, each of which caused a problem -- if I clicked "hide background," then the Try Again layers looked horrible with no grey dialog box hovering behind the text.   But if I unclicked that "hide,"  then the grey dialog box background showed up on ALL the layers I had created elsewhere in my module!

My solution: I went to the feedback master... and I duplicated the master that was being used (that original one was called 'Clean," I gave the new one a different name.)   Then, on one of those two masters, I had the controversial check box CHECKED, and on the other one I left it UNCHECKED.   Lastly, I went to all the slides where I needed the Try Again layer, and I specified that that slide should use that feedback master with the hide box unchecked... and on all my other slides with the normal layers, I changed it so that it used that feedback master where hide was Checked.

THANKS!  eric

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