Setting focus to text entry box in Storyline

Hi.  I think I know the answer to this, but I need to ask to make sure.  I'm updating a simulation of a mainframe data system, originally recorded in Captivate six years ago.  To correctly mimic the system, I need the focus of the screen to be on the text entry box from when the timeline for the slide starts, so that the student can input the data without clicking on the text entry box.  In searching the forums, I found a similar query regarding Quizmaker, and this functionality was not supported in that program.  I'm guessing that Storyline won't support it either.

68 Replies
Bob Bondurant

Thanks, Peter, but that's not quite what I'm looking for (though I do like the zoom region feature).  Perhaps a screenprint will illuminate.

Ordinarily, a cursor would be active on the screen, and the user enters the number of the submenu desired.  I want to mimic this action by use of a text entry box and a variable, but I can't make that operative without the user clicking in the text entry box first.  I would like the focus to be on the text entry box from the start of the timeline for the slide.  A similar query last year, but related to Quizmaker, was answered negatively: http://community.articulate.com/forums/p/5291/29013.aspx#29013

Alexandros Anoyatis

Hi Bob.

Assuming the above is a screenshot, and you intend to use a textbox right after "ENTER NUMBER OF SELECTION" you can place it there, and make sure the background matches. The first textbox in your slide (the one nearest to the bottom of the list in the timeline, if memory serves right) will be focused when the timeline of the slide starts. So you won't have much of a problem there.

However, I don't believe there is currently a way to get the horizontal blinking cursor, as in your screenshot. So you may have to settle for the default vertical blinking cursor.

Hope it helps,
Alex

Tessa Maki

I got this to work the way I think you're looking for by placing the screenshot on a slide master layout instead of directly on the slide.

1. Create a layout on the slide master that includes the background image you want.

2. Insert the new layout on your desired slide.

3. Insert text entry box; format so it blends with background.

4. If you have any other objects on the slide, make sure the text entry box is at the bottom of the list in the timeline or it won't be the focus when timeline starts.

5. Preview - the text entry box should default to a cursor. 

Hope this helps! Merry Christmas!

Jonathan Bacon

I think I've been trying to accomplish a similar setting of focus in my Storyline project, unless I totally misunderstand this thread. The recommendations above sound as if placing a text box at the bottom of the timeline will cause the focus to be in that box...but that does not happen. I have a short educational game (for 1st graders) that requires them to listen to a short animation (with a sentence and word they are to spell) and then they type the word in a text box. I do not want them to have to click in the text box before typing. All slides (with the video) are in a question bank and I've:

  • used all fill-in-the-blank questions
  • used the fill-in-the-box question "Text Entry" (text box?) for students to enter their answer and  
  • moved the "Text Entry" object to the bottom of the timeline for each slide
  • I've also used a trigger to set the initial text ("Click and type the word here") in the "Text Entry" object. That is, the trigger reads: Set TextEntry1 equal to Click and type the word here When the timeline starts."

I wonder if the fill-in-the-blank "Text Entry" object is different from the "Text Box" object so that what I'm trying to accomplish is not possible. I also note that the "Text Entry" object does NOT allow students to use the Backspace key to correct errors.They must swipe over the letter(s) to replace and press Delete, which is really a hassle for 1st graders.

So I'm stumped. Suggestions?

If it helps to view the file, you can download the storyline file at https://www.box.com/s/9fr7dnl1fopfd4wztff8

Bob Bondurant

Hi Jonathan,

My apologies for not following up on this thread, but what I discovered is that the text entry box needs to be at the absolute bottom of the timeline -- beneath your audio recording as well (think of audio as an object on the slide in addition to anything else you can see.)  When I did this, my issue was resolved.

I hope this helps.

Bob

Jonathan Bacon

That's what I did, I placed it at the bottom of the timeline, below anything else...but it still didn't work. That leads me to think that the problem is that Text Entry objects (created when setting up a fill-in-the-blank question) and Text Box objects are not identical and have different behaviors.

Tomer Rotem

Hi Jonathan,

I am not sure i got you right

Do you want that the text box marker will blink automatically? If so, locating the text box at the bottom of your time line by itself won't help you to achive what you want.

You need to open a new layout in your MASTER SLIDE and  insert the background image over there.

Then you need to select this new layout for your slide and  then when you will locate the text box at the bottom of the time line  the text box will blink as in CLI modes..

if you can share a screen shot it will be easier to better understand your needs.

All the best

Rebecca Fleisch Cordeiro

Hi Jonathan,

I totally see what you're talking about: Inserting a text entry box via the menu: Insert >Data Entry: Text entry box behaves as expected; that is, the text entry box is immediately highlighted so Learners need NOT click in the box to activate it.

But, when a text entry box is "auto" created, via a Fill-in-the Blank quiz or a Free-Form Text Entry quiz, the expected behavior doesn't occur, and it's necessary for the Learner to click in the box to activate it.

I hope someone steps in and either describes how to achieve this functionality OR whether it is NOT currently achievable. In which case I, and I assume you, will submit a feature request.

Rebecca Fleisch Cordeiro

Well, I thought I'd bump this again.

Can Articulate please let us know how to work around this? If you look at Jonathan Bacon's question posted April 8th, he explains it well, And I sort of reprise it on April 9th. Thought it might be easier to have y'all scroll up than see a really long post of quotes inside my question.

Also, please see attached. I've created 3 text entry slides here:

One by inserted a text entry on a "blank" slide

One using the graded quiz fill-in

One using the freeform fill in.

Summary:

The text entry box via Insert >Text Entry can be inserted on a slide so it is automatically highlighted and ready for Learners' input. This doesn't seem to be doable on the Graded Fill-in and Freeform Text entries. Is there a workaround? Should we submit a feature request?

Christine Hendrickson

Hi Rebecca :)

Thanks for the info and the file. I can see exactly what you mean - the generated fields contain the instruction text, but the field itself isn't selected. 

I'm afraid I don't know of a way to get this to function differently and it appears to be working as designed. I can definitely see why this would be an appealing and functional feature, though. 

If you, or any of the community members interested in being able to set the focus for question text entries, haven't submitted a feature request for this, I would definitely suggest doing so:

Articulate - Submit a feature request

Thanks very much!

Christine Hendrickson

Rebecca Fleisch Cordeiro said:

Yeah, Christine. Finally someone responded to this thread! I'm imminently sending a request along and I hope others who have subscribed will do so also.

You're probably off by now, so I hope you have a nice evening and rest of the week!

Thanks, again.


Thanks, Rebecca :)

Also - thanks for the heads-up on the link - not sure why it ended up with that one, but I've updated it.

Thanks again and have an awesome day!

Christine

David Swenson

Tomer Rotem said:

Hi Jonathan,

I am not sure i got you right

Do you want that the text box marker will blink automatically? If so, locating the text box at the bottom of your time line by itself won't help you to achive what you want.

You need to open a new layout in your MASTER SLIDE and  insert the background image over there.

Then you need to select this new layout for your slide and  then when you will locate the text box at the bottom of the time line  the text box will blink as in CLI modes..

if you can share a screen shot it will be easier to better understand your needs.

All the best


This is the ONLY way I could get the cursor to automatically show up in the text entry field as the slide began - put the background on a slide master, and start with the text entry field as the only element on the slide.  I added a trigger to the next slide as the tab key.  I duplicated the first slide, move the text entry field to the next blank on the form, and added a text box to show the first form field as filled in.  The *master slide* for showing the form did the trick for me.

Andy Iakobson

I came across this issue today and was glad to find this thread; thank you everyone above for clarifying that the self-focusing only works for manual fields, and not as part of a quiz. I was pulling my hair out.

Because I needed the self-focusing text entry to be part of a quiz, I used this workaround:

  • Use a 'pick one' question instead
  • Put two random buttons off the edge of the screen: Correct and Wrong
  • Set the 'pick one' up so that Correct button is the correct answer
  • Add a text field
  • Add a trigger so that the 'correct' button is selected when the text field is equal to whatever the right answer is (eg, when user presses enter)
  • Add a trigger so that the 'wrong' button is selected when text field is NOT equal to the correct answer (when user presses enter)
  • This will give you the ability to have the text entry field be both graded AND self-focusing (assuming you followed the advice in this thread and moved your text entry field to the bottom of your timeline).
Tessa Maki

Thanks so much for sharing, Andy! That is a brilliant workaround. I've seen the technique of the 'pick one' with buttons off screen demoed before, but I never would have thought to use it in this way. I hadn't checked in on this thread for a while, but seeing that much more has been added over the last year, I'm loving the ideas.

David, the idea to add a trigger to the button to go to next slide so the student could just tab through the form and complete the fields as they would in a live system is a great idea, too! I'm definitely thinking of ways I could use that.

Heather Cody

I struggled a couple of days with this. To save you some time, here is what I've found. If your text entry box is already on the bottom, move in up and then back down. For whatever reason, it seems to work after moving it. My customers also wanted the text box to be blank each time the user tried the activity. If you need this, attached is a screen shot of my triggers. 

Matt Graham

Welp, there's already been some solutions posted, but I thought I'd add my two cents (is it two pennies if you're in the UK?).

I tried all the solutions and while they were partially effective, infuriatingly they'd only work on a couple of questions out of my humble quiz (I'd created a Question Bank of 20-odd Fill in the Blank questions).

I discovered that if moving the text input to the bottom of the timeline doesn't work for you, Right-Click->Send to Back->Send to Back seems to do the trick. Hopefully it'll work for you too!