Sometimes you don't want learners to roam freely around a course. No problem. Here are some ways to control how learners navigate a Rise course.

Restrict Navigation

By default, learners can move freely throughout a course. But sometimes you may need learners to view lessons in sequential order. Just change the navigation mode. Here’s how:

  1. Click Settings in the upper right corner of the course editor.
  2. Select the Navigation tab.
  3. Choose Free or Restricted as the navigation mode.
  4. Click Close in the upper right corner to return to the course outline.

If you let learners navigate freely, you can also allow them to mark unfinished lessons as complete in the sidebar without viewing the content. You might allow this, for example, if you’re creating a refresher course and learners are already familiar with some topics. Just move the Marking Lessons Complete switch to On before you close the navigation settings. (Tip: Quizzes can’t be marked complete.)

Show, Hide, or Disable the Course Sidebar

The sidebar lets learners navigate to different lessons in your course, unless you restrict navigation. You can have the sidebar open or closed by default, or even turn it off altogether. Here's how:

  1. Click Settings in the upper right corner of the course editor.
  2. Select the Navigation tab.
  3. Choose one of these options from the Sidebar drop-down list:
    • Open: This displays the sidebar by default, and learners can close it as needed. (On small screens, such as smartphones, the sidebar automatically collapses to give your content more room, and learners can open it when they need it.)
    • Closed: This hides the sidebar by default, and learners can open it as needed.
    • No Sidebar: This turns off the sidebar altogether. It also removes the course outline from the cover page. And since learners won't have access to the outline, they must navigate lessons in sequential order (unless you use button blocks to branch between lessons). This also disables search.

      Note that the search setting and the option to mark lessons complete disappear when you turn off the sidebar.
  4. When you're finished making selections, click Close in the upper right corner to return to the course outline.

Want to see a demonstration? Check out this video from Articulate CEO Adam Schwartz.

Turn the Search Feature On and Off

Search is active by default in new and existing courses. To disable search, go to Settings, click Navigation, and toggle the Search option to Off. Note that if you've turned off the sidebar for your course, you won't see the search option.

Use Continue Blocks to Reveal Content

Use continue blocks to progressively reveal content or require learners to complete interactions before moving on.

Just insert a continue block from the blocks shortcut bar in a lesson where you want navigation to pause, then choose a Completion Type to determine how the continue block behaves. There are three completion types:

  • None means learners simply need to click the button to continue. There are no other requirements.
  • Complete Block Directly Above means learners must complete the interaction immediately before the continue button.
  • Complete All Blocks Above means learners must complete all interactions above the continue button to proceed.

You can use continue blocks to require learners to complete carousel blocks, checkbox lists, audio blocks, video blocks, accordions, tabs, labeled graphics, processes, sorting activities, flashcards, knowledge checks, and Storyline blocks. (Although button blocks are interactive, you can’t require learners to complete them.)

Use Button Blocks to Branch from One Lesson to Another

Use button blocks to branch learners to other lessons in the course. For example, if you reference a topic discussed elsewhere in the course, you might give learners a button that jumps to that topic.

Just insert a button block or a button stack in a lesson, then choose a Destination for each button. The destination can be another lesson in the same course or an external web page. You can also use button blocks to exit the course.

Turn Off Previous and Next Buttons to Create Branched Scenarios

Create branched scenarios by limiting navigation to button blocks. It’s a fun way to create content where learners must make decisions in order to progress (like those Choose Your Own Adventure books from the 80s, but with less musty library smell).

You'll want to turn off the default navigation buttons that appear at the top and bottom of each lesson. Go to Settings, click Navigation, and toggle the Previous & Next Buttons option to Off. (When this option is switched on, the buttons show the titles of the previous and next lessons.)

To ensure the only way your learners can navigate your course is via your button blocks, select No Sidebar from the Sidebar drop-down list (see above). If you want to provide another way for learners to navigate the course, just set the sidebar to Closed so it doesn’t open automatically but is still available when learners need it.

Want to see an example of a branched scenario in Rise? Check out this course on the art of negotiation.

Turn Off Lesson Numbers

When lesson numbers don’t fit your course content, you can turn them off. Go to Settings, click Navigation, and toggle the Lesson Count Labels option to Off. This removes the Lesson # of # label at the beginning of each lesson. It's particularly handy when you’ve created a branched scenario that doesn’t require numbered lessons.