This week’s blog comes from our Instructional Designers, as the team shares their five top tips when using Adobe Captivate 2019.
Between the Captivate panels (Properties, Library, Timing, Quiz, etc.), Timeline, and Filmstrip, the workspace quickly becomes crowded, even with Captivate fully expanded. To prevent having to close essential panels and scrolling up and down and back and forth, invest in a high-res monitor with a minimum 2560×1600 resolution and the scale set to 100%. I use a laptop with these specifications and have found that an external monitor is not required.
Gotcha: The built-in software simulation function of Captivate only works well with a scale of 100%.
If you find yourself constantly adding/closing/resizing panels, the timeline, the filmstrip, master slides, etc., create custom workspaces. In Captivate, select the Enable custom workspaces/panel undocking (you will need to restart Captivate) check box found by clicking Edit > Preferences>General Settings. After restarting Captivate, set up as many workspaces as you need to accomplish different tasks.
For instance, I have two workspaces: one for general work and one for organizing slides and adding audio. Once the application environment is set to your preference, save it as a workspace.
Gotcha: Each time Captivate is re-opened, you will need to “reset” your workspace. If you have problems with Captivate and are instructed by Captivate support to “reset to defaults,” all workspaces are removed, and the setting will require re-enabling and workspaces rebuilt.
Many repetitive tasks are required when creating content. Identify those tasks and create a template with configurations for those tasks.
This is a big time-saver, especially when creating firm-branded content. To create a template, click File>New Project>Project Template.
To use a template, do not open it from File Explorer; doing so opens a “template” file, not a “project” file. The proper way to use a template is File>New Project>Project From Template.
Items to configure in a template include:
Use the Themes button on the ribbon to apply a theme to a project or view Theme Properties.
Tip: To find out more about Themes and Templates, visit Exploring Themes and Templates.
2. Once captured, look at each slide. Eliminate those not needed; re-capture as necessary.
3. Add each asset/object type, type by type, to each slide requiring them:
4. Add the content to each instruction box on every slide.
5. Format instruction box contents appropriately.
6. Add audio.
Gotcha: Be very careful not to use the Apply to all items of this type option. Doing so will set all item types (in the above illustration, all Smart Shapes) to the selected setting, not just the style defined in the Object Style Manager (in this illustration, the style name is TP_Arrow_Orange).
Of all Captivate features, Software Simulation is probably our favorite. Configured correctly (in your template), and used correctly, makes it simple to capture application windows at the proper dimensions for your slides. Also, interactions can be automatically included as you “click through” the simulation.
A fantastic and time-saving feature that works flawlessly! Be sure to configure the Training mode and use it when capturing.