What's your Story Size?

"They" say size doesn't matter, but in the case of eLearning it does. At least when it comes to the iPad App.

If you want your Storyline course to fit nicely on an iPad (iOS), your Story Size needs a 4:3 ratio. This 4:3 ratio is the default in Storyline, which is 720 X 540.

Now, for me, 720 is too narrow; considering the minimum resolution being 1024X768 on the desktop. I'm losing (giving up) a lot of desktop real estate at 720 (just for the sake of the iPad).

I'd like to hear from others:

  1. Now that you can change your Story Size, are you? Or you find yourself working with the default?
  2. How important is it that your course fits snug on the iPad (iOS)? Do you consider this?
  3. Is the iPad even at all important in your course delivery?



76 Replies
Rachel Craig

Hi, everyone!

Does anyone else have an issue where when you use the 1000 X 750 screen size, your quizzes look really odd? I included an image here, when reviewing the quiz, the correct answers are HUGE. The official answer I got from Articulate was to either:

a) Lower than 760x570 for 4:3 aspect ratio.

b) Lower than 970x546 for 16:9 aspect ratio.

Any one in the community come up with other workarounds?



Steve Flowers

"Your dimensions are wrong and way to [sic] small" isn't something you could possibly tell from where you are, Will.

The dimensions you gave above are OK for some contexts and not OK for others, right? If most of your audience is stuck with older hardware / laptops with a set resolution of 1024x768, how will 1280x720 work out? Half of your audience running a slower internet connection? That 1280x720 layout will look beautiful if they can get it to load. 

Too many factors at play to make a "best choice" because there is no one single best choice. Every design choice is (should be) driven by constraints.


Design professionals rarely post without backing up their assertions with a portfolio. Real pro's don't snipe anonymously on the net.  That's a challenge worth solving, eh?

Brian Allen
Steve Flowers

"Your dimensions are wrong and way to [sic] small" isn't something you could possibly tell from where you are, Will.

My thoughts exactly Steve, completely agree.  In addition to the points you made above, many of our users have laptops with a 720P resolution, meaning that a 1280x720 sized course would still not fit properly on their screen.

As far as images not looking great when the course is sized up for larger monitors, I always prefer to lock the course size at the dimensions I design to, so that my images, videos and other assets always display the way they were intended to.

Rachel Craig

Locking my screen has made a world of difference in relation to how my pictures look. I didn't do that for my first course, and it was so pixelated. I had to go back and republish my course. It's so nice!
My courses are being designed mobile (specifically iPad Air) first, but I wanted to leave the option for users to access the course via desktop, and 1000 X 750 works wonderfully!

Situations definitely drive what size your courses will be. I've seen so many different sizes online, and it all depends on what you and your client want. One of the great things about Storyline (and probably Studio, but I use Storyline) is no matter what size you make your courses, it's so easy to design and make them look fantastic.

Also, this size scales nicely for an iPhone 4! You just need a magnifying glass to see everything on such a small screen :P 

Jamie Moorcroft-Sharp

I have been experiencing this issue today, using the most up to date Storyline 2. Not sure how long it will last but the fix was pretty simple. Start a new upload in SABA, don't upload over the one that's already there because it just displays the original one anyway and will never work.

Do a completely new upload, make sure scaling is chosen in the options in the player settings, and it will work. Took an hour and a half of publishing and uploading with someone else before this simple fix was found.

Brian Allen
Jamie Moorcroft-Sharp

don't upload over the one that's already there because it just displays the original one anyway and will never work

I believe I've read somewhere here where SABA keeps a 24 hour cache and if you load a course, then update the course, you won't be able to see the updated changes until the following day.

Sylvia Wright

Can anyone tell me...with the current version of SL2 does this option by Ryan still seem feasible for getting optimal size on desktop and ipad/android?...

Ryan Martin AUTHOR

I think I may have an option.

What would be the problem with having a Story Size of 1024 X 768 ... plus... Browser size: Display at user's current browser size ... plus... Player size: Scale player to fill browser window

1024X768 is the same ratio as 720X540 (4:3). Meaning this scales to fit nicely in the iOS App.



Alyssa Gomez

Hi Sylvia!

This article explains How to Determine the Optimal Slide Size for Mobile Devices for Storyline 2. Like you mentioned, 4:3 is a great ratio for iPads, but you might find it too narrow for desktop computers. The setting Scale player to fill browser window will increase the width or the height of the player to fill the browser, but not both. What you might see in this case is the height fills the browser window, but the width does not, and you'll notice white space on either side of the player. That is because Storyline will never stretch the width of your slide to distort your design. It will always maintain the same aspect ratio. I hope that helps!

Sylvia Wright

Hi Alyssa. Thanks for the help.  I'm still bound by having to create for both laptop/desktop and mobile and was hoping that perhaps Ryan's settings might help.  I also just found eLearningchips on designing your own player in SL2 and am facinated and thinking this might solve some other challenges (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrN281Y1luCAHWSTdfdrAZg).  I guess I'll have to try it on something small and see what happens - ugh - more time.

Michael Bauer

Am I getting my authoring tools mixed up? I thought there was an option to select to select "iPad" and it would give you the default settings. Perhaps I am wrong.

I am also wanting to find this out, as there are a bunch of new iPads arriving in to the office soon (just not sure which iPad version it is yet!).