In Storyline, a Zoom Region allows you to give learners a close-up view of a specific area of your slide at any point in the slide's duration. This is a great way to draw your learner's attention to important content — whether it's a specific part of an image or a video, an object, a character, a bit of text, or anything else you've inserted on your slide.

For example, suppose your slide contains an image of a machine control panel, and you want to emphasize a critical switch on the panel when the narrator describes it. Or, maybe your slide contains a video of a software demo, and you want to zero in on a particular field at a certain time. The zoom feature is great for situations like these!

The zoom feature is also a handy tool for creating a more cinematic feel in e-learning scenarios. For example, if a character in your scenario needs to make an important decision, you can use the zoom feature to zoom in on the character's face as the narrator describes what the character's thinking.

You can have as many Zoom Regions on your slide as you want, and you can even use consecutive zoom regions for a panning effect. The zoom region will always have the same aspect ratio as your slides, so that the zoomed area doesn't appear skewed or stretched.

Here's how to add and customize a Zoom Region.

  1. Go to the slide where you want to insert a Zoom Region.
  2. Click the Insert tab on the Storyline ribbon.
  3. Select Zoom Region.
  4. Storyline inserts a rectangle on your slide to represent the Zoom Region. Everything else around the Zoom Region dims temporarily like in the picture below, to indicate you're in zoom edit mode.
  5. Now you can:
    • Drag the corner handles of the Zoom Region to adjust its size.
    • Click and drag the zoom region to any place on your slide.
  6. When you're done adjusting the zoom size and position, click anywhere in the grayed-out area (or anywhere off of the slide stage) to exit zoom edit mode. Your slide returns to its normal appearance and the boundary of the Zoom Region appears as a thin green outline. (This outline won't be visible to your learners — it's only there for you.)
  7. Now you can adjust the timing of the zoom. Like any other object on your slide, the Zoom Region appears on the Storyline Timeline. It'll always appear as the topmost item in the Timeline's list of objects. To change when the zoom starts and ends, drag the left or right boundary of the zoom within the Timeline, or drag the entire zoom item to any point on the timeline. If you need help opening or using the Timeline, check out this tutorial.

Changing the Zoom Speed

New zoom regions that you add to your slide default to a speed of "medium," but you can adjust the speed to be faster or slower if you like. Or, you can even make the zoom instantaneous—meaning that the zoomed-in region appears immediately rather than progressing from the regular view to the zoomed view.

To change the zoom speed, right-click the zoom area on your slide and choose Zoom Transition Speed. Then choose one of the speed options shown:

Editing or Deleting a Zoom Region

To change the size or placement of a Zoom Region, just click its bounding area (it will appear on your slide as a thin green rectangle). Then drag the corner handles to change the size, or click and drag the entire zoom area to adjust its position.

If you have trouble seeing or selecting the Zoom Region, you can always find it in the Timeline and select it there first, so that it becomes easier to see on your slide. Any Zoom Regions you've added to your slide will always appear at the top of the list of objects in the timeline.

To delete a Zoom Region, just select it and press the delete key on your keyboard.

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Creating a Panning Effect