Text variable - reference

May 21, 2020

I often use text variables for learners to type something into a text box and then pipe them back into the course as a %ref%-- the question is, if the user chooses NOT to type something in, is there a way to eliminate the %refname%?

9 Replies
Richard Ekparian

What I do to avoid blank spaces (e.g. "...thank you, %Name%!" = "...thank you, !") when a learner doesn't enter a text box is to add a trigger to set the variable to a generic title if the variable is blank. 

When the timeline starts on this slide
Set Name to value Travel Advisor
if Name = value(blank)

So in the example above, if the text box isn't filled out, they'd see "...thank you, Travel Advisor!".

Walt Hamilton


On the second page, where you want to show the learner's input, you should show it in a plain text box. You have used a text Entry box:


You may have discovered a new useful feature. When you put something in a text Entry box, that is used as the prompt. If you use a reference for that prompt, it shows the contents of the variable. I'm serious, by using a reference, you can have a dynamic prompt that varies according to previous actions. That's a new and valuable idea for me, at least. On the other hand, if the reference is empty, it does show the literal reference as a prompt, which a plain text box doesn't.

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