Timed Quiz with Question Bank issue

May 19, 2012

I am trying to set up a quiz which is limited to 1 min and drawing questions from a question bank. When I publish the module, the quiz keeps repeating the question bank choices (even those already answered) until the timer runs out.   And when it runs out, a pop feedback window shows with a Continue button which doesn't actually take you anywhere. 

Anyone have any insight here please?


36 Replies
Ben  Wyse

Thanks Gerry,


When the time runs out, the feedback box pops up but when you click "OK", it will not go away. 

1) How do I get this to clear?

2) Where is the formatting controlled for this feedback box?   It's not the regular feedback master.

3) I have it set (I think) to select 20 questions from the question bank (of 40 questions) but it just keeps presenting questions until the time runs out.


Gerry Wasiluk

I'm getting the same as Phil.

Hey, Ben!  Will this be a final quiz in a course or a knowledge test type of thing?

If this was a knowledge test thing in the middle of a course, and no fix is forthcoming for a while, I might be tempted to do it all on one slide putting in the questions manually, one slide per level, and the logic for them on each levels.  Then I'd create my own time limit exceeded layer that would kick in at 60 seconds, though I'm not sure if that would work, even if the base layer was not turned off on each layer.

Would be a bummer to implement if it worked . . .

Ben  Wyse

Actually, this a a freestanding game module to for use in a trade-show booth...  It collects the name and email address of the player and stores it in an Excel file.   I have 40 questions loaded in a question bank.  I wanted it to have a 1 minute time limit for the player.  At this point, I am thinking this is a bug.  Hopefully, Magnus will have a fix for me. 

Thanks for trying Phil and Gerry.

Jeanette Brooks

Hi Ben! If I'm understanding your intent correctly, you only need one draw from the question bank - you wouldn''t need to set up 20 separate draws. In fact, right now, each draw slide that you've added is set to draw all 20 questions at random, each time - so this is why you are seeing what seems like an endless stream of questions, rather than just 20. What you can do instead, is set up just one draw, and indicate in the  In your draw that you want 20 questions to display (out of the 40 that you've set up). Like the picture below. So, that should clear up the problem with too many questions appearing.

Unfortunately, regarding the time-limit popup, I wasn't able to get that to clear either, even in a brand new file with just a few placeholder question slides. I'm not sure if this is expected behavior or not - it's possible that the intention is, if a user maxes out their time limit, Storyline considers them to be done with that session and doesn't allow them to proceed to other content. But I can see why, in your situation, that's not ideal. Let me ask dev/support if there is a workaround to the behavior you're seeing.

Ben  Wyse

I have figure out a way to work around this bug by creating my own timer function which resides on the Question Bank slide master. It uses a series of triggers which change the state of a variable at 1 sec intervals.  By putting it on the slide master for the quiz slides, I am able to keep the timer counting down as the user answers questions.   If the time runs out before they get through all the questions, a layer pops up, the timer is zero'd out and the user has to click to go to see their results.  

I removed the timed quiz setting on the Results slide.


This solves the quiz timer bug for me.

Lars Lindgren

I have the same issue as Ben.

When the timelimit of a quiz comes to an end a pop-up is displayed and you get moved to the Resultpage where the timelimit was set. However, the times-up alert doesn't disappear and when you click OK it just re-appears over and over.
Very frustrating. Either a bug or some very hidden feature for how to link the OK button to some follow-up action.

Please advice, is there a bug with the "quiz time exceeded" pop-up or how is it supposed to work?



Ben D said:

I am trying to set up a quiz which is limited to 1 min and drawing questions from a question bank. When I publish the module, the quiz keeps repeating the question bank choices (even those already answered) until the timer runs out.   And when it runs out, a pop feedback window shows with a Continue button which doesn't actually take you anywhere. 

Anyone have any insight here please?


Jeanette Brooks

Hi Lars - by design, the timer available on the result slide is a feature that will "end the quiz (or the course)" after the specified timeframe...which is why it's not permitting further interaction with the course once the time limit is reached. However, I agree that it's a little odd that the OK button doesn't do anything, and I'm sorry that feels clumsy. The dev team is aware of it, and I'd encourage you to submit a feature request suggesting this behavior be changed to allow learners to clear the message if the course author permits. Thank you so much!

Lars Lindgren

Thanks for the quick reply Jeanette.

It's more than a usability issue since the time-out pop-up doesn't go away so the final result page becomes unusable.

Also, if it was possible to put a trigger to the OK-button one could control exactly what should happen once the time runs out.

Right now everything just comes to a confusing full stop.

If the pop-up isn't floating on top of everything I guess one could create a top menu item that links to a final result page on the condition that the times up.

I'll post a feature request.

Again thanks for the quick reply

Ben  Wyse


I went round and round with this issue.  It's a bug.  The same type of function in QuizMaker works properly.  But, since it's a bug you have to figure out a work around.  Thanks to the Jeannette, Gerry and Phil, I have been able to work out some ways to get around it. 

You can create your own timer function by setting up a series of triggers.  If you create your timer on your Question Slide Master, it will work across all your questions as they pull from the Slide Bank.  And when your self-created timer runs out of time, you have it bring up a layer (again from the slide master) which stops everything and has a button to take you the results slide.   

To create the timer (say for 60 seconds), you would create 60 objects (like rectangles) off slide.  You set those on your timeline of the slide master (the one you will use for the questions).  When you put them on the timeline, you put the 60 objects on so they end every 1 second. As each object ends, you have a trigger which adjusts a timer variable.    For example,  Obj 1 ends at 1 sec and trigger is set to subtract 1 sec from Timer Variable (which begins with a value of 60).  Obj 2 ends at 2 sec with the same trigger,  Obj 3 ends at 3 sec.    And so on.  It's tedious but not hard.  After 60 objects, the time has counted down to 0.

You create a text box to show the countdown by have the text box set up with your variable, such as %timer%.   And every time you adjust your Timer variable you have it update the text box too.

It's not perfect but it works good well enough.    

Hope this is helpful


Lars Lindgren

Thanks Ben, yes it's a bug. Pressing the Alert's OK-button actually takes you to the corresponding Resultspage which makes sense. The only problem is that the pop-up should also disappear but it doesn't.

I saw your workaround and if you could post the sourcecode for copy/paste that would be much appreciated.

On a slight sidenote, if if was possible to easily communicate between embedded flash objects and SL it would be a breeze to create a little flash timer that could talk to SL and do exactly what you've manually done inside SL.

That would extend the capacity of SL tremendously.

In essence pretty much any problem or need for features that one would come across could be solved by such a flash "plug-in" if it was easy to communicate between SL and embedded flashs (and the iframed webobjects)

A library of useful plug-ins could be made available and suddenly SL would turbo-boost.

Right now I guess it can be done with javascript but the syntax isn't completely clear.

Also, if the veil could be further lifted on the syntax for communicating with SL to grab variables and objects inside it, that would help.
Maybe this is already out there, I've just gotten started and still learning.

To me, right now SL feels right on the edge. For straigth forward developments that suits SL, it's perfect.

For anything that goes beyond what SL is primarily built for, it seems to beomce a bit cumbersome and one might just as well fall back to do it all by hand in Flash.

Thanks for your ideas, advice and quick responses. Great with such an alive community!

Very much appreciated!



Ben  Wyse

Well if you create your own timer, you would turn off the timed quiz option setting.    As for listener, in a sense that is what you are creating by slugging through all the objects and variable adjustments.

I will post something but it will be Monday before I am near my office computer with SL on it. 

There are some other ways to do this too with javascript and running scripts on the server.  But, I just needed a timer to limit how long a user has to answer the questions.

Lars Lindgren

Thanks Ben,

I'm currently creating a larger test for a client and the available time should be 1.5 hours so I won't do the second by second work around you did

However, Similar approach could be used and have say every 10 min and then escalate towards the end.

I think many will run into this problem so a fix will be appreacited by a lot of people.

Right now, I'm afraid the timelimit feature in SL is fairly useless.

There must be a way to grab or use the timers "ElapsedTime"-variable but I guess that will come with the SDK.

Hopefully the bug can be easily fixed in SL. 

They've just forgotten to turn off the Alert pop-up when the OK-button is pressed.

Ben  Wyse

Yes, Eric's work was the basis of what I did.  I just moved it to the slide master. 

Oh,  one more thing you need to know.  And this is a huge issue with respect to putting it on the slide master.  All your quiz questions have to have a timeline equal to the total time (if you are pulling them from a question bank).  So, that will not work if you using really long timers like you described.  You will have to use a method which is putting timers and objects on each slide.... will be a real pain I think.

Lars Lindgren

Yes, this solution won't work for me. The issue really need to be fixed in SL.

I see two potential workarounds.

1) put a flash swf in a div that floats on top of the SL swf and figure out how to communicate between the two using javascript. This should be possible. The javascript would need to be called pretty much on every page unless there is a way to command the SL navigation from an external command from a javascript.

2) Simply have a javascript call on pretty much every page in SL and let the javascript retrieve the computer clock and from that calculate the elapsed time and display it as a variable at the top of every page.

Code examples anyone?

Hopefully SL will simply fix the bug, the times-up alert simply need to close upon clicking OK.

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