Using <Tab> as a submit key in a 'Text entry interaction'

Jul 24, 2014

Hi All,

I have a little challenge. In our courses we use a lot of 'Text entry interactions'.

Users should be able to submit the input by the <Enter> and the <Tab> key and by the submit button.

No problem so far, but when users do use the tab key a yellow rectangle appears.

- When the answer is incorrect the rectangle will appear around the Feedback caption.

- When the answer is correct and quiz proceeds to the next slide, the rectangle can appear anywhere.

Does anyone recognizes this problem and knows what the solution to it might be?

All input is appreciated!

Kind regards,


55 Replies
Ed Crane


Hi Ashley,

Sorry, I may be missing something, but I think I get what you're saying...The "Skip Player Navigation..." article you linked to previously says [bold added by me] "When you press the Tab key after the last object on the slide, the screen reader will instruct you to press the spacebar or Enter key if you want to skip player navigation.
The option to skip player navigation when using a screen reader is always enabled."

It's not clear from that article how to skip player navigation without a screen reader. I think you mean the bulleted procedures under step 2 can be performed without a screen reader in order to skip player navigation? If so, that's good to know, but I would have to think about how to use that to help submit an interaction or move to the next slide using the Tab key.

Thank you for the link about the yellow box...I watched that video and it was informative, but it only covered objects on the slide showing the yellow box, but did not refer to preventing the yellow box from highlighting the Player controls.

Thanks again for your posts, and I apologize if I'm misread something. Have a great weekend.

Ashley Terwilliger-Pollard

Hi Ed,

The  Yellow box should still be highlighting items in the player as well - if you're not seeing that I'd want to check into that further. What version of Storyline are you using? Have you tested it in preview and publish? Once published did you upload the content to your server/LMS or did you test it locally? 

Ed Crane

Hi Ashley,

 I'm using Storyline 360. I have tested it in preview, published and tested locally, and published and tested using SCORM Cloud.

 What I was going for was that for each slide, the learner is able to press the Tab key in order to submit the interaction and not have any objects or player items be highlighted. This works, and after the interaction is submitted, the learner moves to the next slide as if they clicked the Submit button.

The file I published and tested is the same one I uploaded a few days ago in a previous post.

Hope this helps, please let me know if you have further questions.

Bob DeFord

I developed a solution for this that I think many on this discussion might be looking for. It uses a regular text entry (not the quiz) and allows the user to press Tab. Doing this outside the quiz also has the advantage of letting you have a blinking cursor (as long as any screenprint is on a master slide). The story file has a short explanation in it. It is in Storyline 2.

Todd Haynes

Bob, weird thing. IN your .story file, I'm changing the trigger Set Text Entry3 equal to the value of TextEntry3 when the user presses the TAB key. I change TAB to another key, say 3, Enter, Right, etc... and none of those work, but Tab continues to work. I want the text entry to be submitted when the user has presses "3" for the string "abc123". I can't get the key "3" to trigger anything. Can you change the key from Tab to "3" and get it to work?

Todd Haynes

Thank you Alyssa. It was Bob's abc123_example.story. The expected behavior from the Question form in the slide is to type abc123, and when the 3 is typed, the question is submitted and the movie proceeds to the next slide. It appears to work in Storyline 2, but if I upgrade the .story to 360, I cannot get the "3" key to trigger anything. I have to hit the Enter key to submit the text entry question.

Leslie McKerchie

Thanks for the details Todd. I am able to recreate what you are seeing. This has recently been reported to our team as a possible bug report, so I will add this thread and the sample file to the report. This will allow us to track user impact as well as update you here when we can.

I wanted to share some information on how we define bugs and how we tackle them when they occur. 

Rory Lavender

Hello everyone. I have seen several discussions about recording simulations using text entry fields + tabs keys. We too have simulations which have multiple input fields on one screen and we like to use the tab key because it is more realistic then pressing Enter after each input. When I originally started doing these recordings, I encountered the "yellow box" issue. Because delivery time was fast approaching, I 'forced' the student to press Enter and not use the Tab key as I had not yet discovered the reason for the yellow box. I didn't mean for this to be a permanent solution. I am now revisiting this process. I did find one process that involves manually adding text entry fields and now this solution which is offering more workarounds. I originally started this in SL2 and am now using SL 360. So, am I understanding this correctly, unlike Captivate, we cannot record simulations using multiple-input fields + the Tab key and have them work as-is? Am I missing something? Does every solution require some kind of workaround? Thanks for helping me wrap my head around this. Needless to say, when one has many interactions to update, the less manipulation the better. Thanks for any clarification. Also, I remember someone saying I had to click in the input field and not press Tab if that rings a bell with anyone. Thanks.

Ashley Terwilliger-Pollard

HI Rory,

The tab key highlighting the items in a yellow box is an accessibility feature that's enabled by default. You can turn off the yellow accessibility box for an object by removing the object from the slide's tab order (see the custom tab order articles mentioned above) or by unchecking the accessibility visibility box on the Size and Position window.

Storyline will create each of those text entries and interactions as separate slides in a Test/Try it Mode of screen recording, so that's another piece to keep in mind. 

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