In Engage’09, you can quickly add an introduction or summary screen to your interactions.  Here’s why you might want to do so, and how to do it.

You wouldn't sidle up to someone at a dinner party out-of-the-blue and start spouting facts about Edgar Allen Poe, or the seven essential steps of digital photo editing, or how to properly use an electron microscope. Well, maybe you would—but the point is, you shouldn't. At least not till you've given them a reason why they need this information and what they should do with it.

Same with e-learning. When you're crafting your Engage interactions, remember that your users might need some context and guidance to get the most out of your interaction. It's important that they know why and how to experience your interaction, as well as what to do afterwards.

That's why Engage allows you to enhance your interaction with an introduction, a summary, or both. It's easy to set up either of them, and it's just as easy to remove them if you change your mind. Here we'll walk through the steps you need to know.

Adding an Introduction

If you include an introduction, it'll be the first thing users see when your interaction launches. It can help users understand what they'll experience when they go through your interaction, and why it's important. It also gives you a way to communicate any special instructions about navigation or other aspects of the interface. Take a look at the screen below. On the right-hand side of this Glossary interaction is an example of an introduction:

Any new interaction you create includes an introduction by default.

Here's how to customize it:

  1. Open your interaction in Engage and click Edit Introduction. If an introduction previously existed but got deleted, the button will say Add Introduction, and you can click that instead. (The other buttons available on your screen might be different than the ones shown below, depending on the type of interaction you're building.)
  2. Enter the title for your introduction and any introductory text you like. For the introductory text, you have the same text-editing options here as you do for any other part of your Engage interaction. This tutorial has more info about customizing text in Engage.
  3. If you want, you can also use this same screen to add an image, a movie, or audio to your introduction. (Learn more about adding images or movies and narration.)
  4. If you're working with a Labeled Graphic interaction, you'll also get to choose the marker color and style of your introduction, as well as the position of the marker relative to your introduction's title and text:

Adding a Summary

A summary is another cool feature that can add value to your users' learning experience. It offers a great way to sum up what you've presented, and to give users a final call to action. Here's an example of a summary at the end of a Pyramid interaction:

Users see the summary when they arrive at the end of the interaction by clicking the forward button in the upper-right corner of the player. (Or, if your interaction is set to advance automatically, then the summary just displays at the end, on its own.) If you'd rather let users access the summary from other points within your interaction, you can always insert a hyperlink to the summary anywhere you like.

Here's how to create a summary for your Engage interaction:

  1. Open your interaction in Engage and click Add Summary. If a summary already exists for this interaction, the button will say Edit Summary, and you can click that instead. (The other buttons available on your screen might be a little different than the ones shown here, depending on the type of interaction you're building.)
  2. Enter the title for your summary and any summary text you like. You have the same text-editing options here as you do for any other part of your Engage interaction. This tutorial has more info about customizing text in your interactions.
  3. If you want, you can also add an image, a movie, or audio to your summary.
  4. If you're working with a Labeled Graphic interaction, you'll also get to choose the marker color and style of your summary, as well as the position of the marker relative to your introduction's title and text:

Deleting a Summary or an Introduction

If you change your mind about including a summary or an introduction, it's easy to remove either. Here's how:

  1. Open your interaction in Engage and click Interaction Properties.
  2. Along the left edge of the pop-up that appears, click the name of the interaction type you're working with. (It'll be right under the Playback option.)
  3. Under Player Features, unmark the Introduction or Summary box to remove them from your interaction.
  4. Click OK and then Yes to save your changes.