Blank screen after update

Feb 27, 2018

Sure I have seen this mentioned in the forum before but I cannot locate it now (the search function is awful).

If I update my content and re-export it to SCORM, after updating the content on my LMS people who have previously launched the content (and not completed the module) are presented with a blank screen when they re-launch (the updated content). This is an issue unique to Rise courses. Please advise if this is a known / replicatable issue. And if there is something that can be done to resolve.

105 Replies
Michael Getz

Chris - just a note - the fix I mentioned for SCORM 1.2 still works for us in Moodle. The location of "function SCORM_GetBookmark()" in scormdriver.js has changed, but the change that needs to be made to it is the same and still works in Moodle and presumably in other standard LMSes. (We tested in SCORMCloud and TalentLMS, for example.)

1. Unzip the Rise SCORM 1.2 zip package and locate the file scormdriver.js in the /scormdriver folder. Open scormdriver.js in Notepad or other text editor.

3. Locate this function, and in particular, the portion of the line in bold below:

function SCORM_GetBookmark(){WriteToDebug("In SCORM_GetBookmark");SCORM_ClearErrorInfo();return SCORM_CallLMSGetValue("cmi.core.lesson_location");}

4. Replace it with this function:

function SCORM_GetBookmark(){WriteToDebug("In SCORM_GetBookmark");SCORM_ClearErrorInfo();return "";}

Basically, you're replacing   return SCORM_CallLMSGetValue("cmi.core.lesson_location");   with return "";  which just tells Articulate *not* to retrieve the bookmark.

The result is that while all the learner completion and progress status has been retained (and shows on the left side Rise menu), it always causes Rise to restart subsequent sessions at the opening page. 

Once you've made the change, re-zip up the Rise SCORM package (make sure to create the zip from the root folder of the course) and re-upload to the LMS. 

Paul Dixon

Hi, just following up on this thread. We have had the blank screen problem on both of our LMS (Moodle 3.9 and a bespoke elearning system). Thank you to Michael Getz and ADA Egret for your posts - they have helped us understand the problem. We have moved to using a base course for development/ updates and are now duplicating the course with the duplicates assigned as backup courses. We no longer get the blank screen issue when we update the course in either LMS.

We have however identified another issue as a result of testing how Rise works when we have published a course and then updated it at a later date.

We have created a number of versions, all building on a 'base' test course:

  • Version 1.0: Base course - 4 sections: Introduction; Background, Funding and Summary. Each section contains 3 or 4 lessons
  • Version 1.1: Introduction section - a lesson updated to include 3 new blocks
  • Version 1.2: Introduction section - added a lesson (duplicated)

We uploaded version 1.0 to Moodle. Logged in as a test user - completed the introduction section and the 3 lessons. Started the second section; first lesson and then exited the course. Everything worked as expected; the lesson completion data for each of the three lessons in the introduction section were displayed as completed.

We updated the course with version 1.1 where a lesson had been expanded to include the 3 new blocks. Logged back in using the test user account.  The lesson completion data for each of the three lessons in the introduction section were displayed as completed - as you would expect. The bookmarking worked as expected - user returned to second section; first lesson.

We updated the course with version 1.2; where we had added a lesson into the introduction section expanding it from 3 to 4 lessons. The lesson was added in as the third lesson of the four.

Logged back in using the test user account. The bookmarking worked as expected - user returned to second section; first lesson.

The lesson completion data  for three of the lessons in the introduction section were displayed as completed - however this included the new lesson being flagged as completed (which the user had not completed) and the (originally third) forth lesson (which had been completed by the user) now flagged as not completed.

We wondered whether this is because the cmi.suspend_data is identified by section / lesson order and not by Rise lesson id?

We have 35 courses that we are planning to develop using Rise, that we will be used by over 3000 users. We update our courses more than once per year, we would like to be able to update/ expand the courses while maintaining the lesson completion data for our users.

We would appreciate comments/ thoughts on the above.

Bo Kristian Olsen

Hi Paul,

We also have Moodle 3.9 and are running into this problem quite frequently. Having approx 80 000 users, it's quite the hassle.

But you said you're not running into this problem anymore with having a ''base'' course and duplicates as backup courses? I didnt quite understand how that worked exactly? You have a base / main course from where you do all your updates and export, but what purpose do the duplicates then serve? And wouldnt you run into the blank error if the changes on the base course were too big / severe that it messed up the location messaging in the scorm?

I might've missed something quite basic, sorry if thats the case.

Paul Dixon

The duplicate courses are backups of the course that we are developing (e.g. something goes wrong we have a copy of the previous version). We looked at the lesson id of the 'base' course and could see that they remained consistent for a given lesson when we added new lessons to a section. The lesson ids change for all lessons when you duplicate a course. Its the change in lesson ids  that causes the blank screen - hence the need to stick with the 'base' version of the course.

What we are finding is that the lesson progress data is not accurately recorded (see post). We have received an email from Articulate this week stating that:

"Articulate have designed their courses so that when course files within an existing course are updated in a LMS or Web server, learners who previously started the course won't be able to resume where they left off. While as described, there are some situations in which the LMS can preserve the learner data while updating the course, it isn't a guarantee that their courses will work each time after the update. That is because the course structure changes each time you make changes to it, especially when removing or adding lessons to the course."

Clearly this is a bit of problem and seems to be an issue with the scorm 1.2 data limitation (Articulate 360 - Articulate Studio: Exceeding SCORM Suspend Data Limits - Articulate Support).

We have tested updating the 'base' course adding / remove lessons / restructuring and the course works when you upload it to the LMS - the lesson progression data doesn't. We are now at the stage of adding in the java script update (see this thread) that results in the course always opening at the overview page. The aim is to use the overview page to post messages to learners providing advice on the updates along with instructions.

Happy to meet up via teams if you would like to discuss further. P

Bo Kristian Olsen

Alright, thanks for the clarification. I've been testing a bit myself and was under the impression that if you made too severe changes, i.e deleting lessons that were previously completed it would result in a blank screen.

If you have the time it would be great to have a teams meeting to discuss for further clarification.

- Bo

Bo Kristian Olsen

Hi, Michael, and thanks for the code in your reply. Just to clarify as I have little to no knowledge on this. If I go into the .js file I'd be taking the string:
SCORM_GetBookmark(){WriteToDebug("In SCORM_GetBookmark");SCORM_ClearErrorInfo();return SCORM_CallLMSGetValue("cmi.core.lesson_location")}
And replacing the whole string with:

SCORM_GetBookmark(){WriteToDebug("In SCORM_GetBookmark");SCORM_ClearErrorInfo();return "";}

thus basically ''just'' deleting the scorm_callLMSGetValue("cmi.core.lesson.location") ?

Would that be the correct way of doing it, and that would force the scorm to restart at the opening page (negating the blank screen error) and the lessons that would be marked as completed would still be marked in the menu?