Tutorial: Capturing Storyline Variables in an LMS

Have you just spent hours getting your custom quiz set up just right, only to realise that your Storyline variables aren't being passed to the LMS?

I remember when I first realised that Storyline didn't pass variables to an LMS. It seemed like a mistake. Like there must be an option somewhere to enable this. But there isn't, well, not an obvious one anyway!

In this tutorial we will look at how to get Storyline to pass your variables to the LMS so they can be stored for future reference.

Click here to jump to the tutorial and here to download the source file.

Let me know if you have any questions, comments or are stuck with implementing any of this. I'm happy to help where I can.


12 Replies

I call them "ghost assessments" because they are invisible to the learners. I've used them for a while and they work great!  My use is slightly different then gathering and storing info; I use them to give credit for actions/behaviors.
Because you can use variables to change the state of other objects, I frequently use T/F "Ghost Qs" to give learners credit for different actions. The action toggles a variable and the variable sets the state of the answer on the question that they never see to the correct choice.  Users can get credit for watching a video all the way through or for making good choices in a multi-branching scenario. Your imagination is the limit.

Tom W

Hi there.

Wondering if someone can help me with this. I've been following this tutorial to report a number variable to an LMS, and it was working previously, but has now stopped working.

I'm trying to report a number variable titled 'combined_score' to the LMS. It has to be a number variable, as it's calculated using add and subtract operators. I'm using the 'How many' question slide, as advised in the tutorial, and have the triggers set up correctly to match the source Storyline file. When I was first testing this last Thursday the variable was showing in my LMS under the 'Answered' column in the report, but now it's stopped working for some reason and is blank:

All I've changed is the question title so that 'Combined score' shows under the 'Question name' column, rather than 'How many'. This shouldn't affect the variable reporting though should it?

I've attached the Storyline file (I'm only testing functionality, so haven't done any work on the design, hence it not looking very good!)

Any help would be appreciated.


Tom W

I think I've finally got it to work after testing it all day. I've discovered a few extra things that need to be done to get it to work:

  • The 'Submit interaction' trigger can't be set to 'When the timeline starts' - it has to be set to 'When the timeline ends'.
  • The text/numeric entry field needs to be at the bottom of the timeline. This is because in order for it to be picked up by the LMS the cursor needs to be active in the field. This will only happen by default if the field is at the bottom of the timeline. If it's not at the bottom, the user needs to manually click on the field, which defeats the purpose of having a 'hidden' slide.

I'm now testing getting specific answers as well as the final score reported back, so will add another post if I find anything else that isn't working.

EDIT: I've just discovered that if the text/numeric entry field is at the bottom of the timeline by default, it needs to be moved to the top of the timeline, then back to the bottom in order to make the cursor active by default. Not sure why this is. Maybe a bug?