Presenter '13: Publishing a Presentation for LMS

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If you're using a learning management system (LMS) to deploy e-learning content, you'll want to use the LMS publishing option in Articulate Presenter.

Step 1: Enter Title, Description, and Folder Location

  1. Go to the Articulate tab on the PowerPoint ribbon, and click Publish.
  2. When the Publish window appears, select the LMS tab on the left. 
  3. Check the text that appears in the Title field, and customize it if you'd like. This text defaults to the name of your PowerPoint file. If you change it, it'll change the title text that Presenter uses in the following places (but it won't change your actual file name):
    • The folder that Presenter creates to contain your published output. For example, if the Title field contains the words MSDS Course, Presenter creates a new folder on your hard drive called MSDS Course—Presenter output when you publish.
    • The browser title bar, when learners view your published presentation in a browser window.
    • The top bar of your course player, if you've opted to include the title as one of the player features.
    • Any screen in your LMS interface that contains titles of content items.
    • If you publish your content for use with the Articulate Mobile Player app, the presentation title is also used on the HTML launch page and the list of content names in the mobile player library.
  4. In the Description field, enter descriptive text about your presentation. Depending on your LMS, this descriptive text may appear along with the presentation name in certain screens in your LMS environment.
  5. In the Folder field, indicate the place on your computer where you want Presenter to create your published output. Click the ellipsis button (...) to browse to a specific location. Presenter will create a new folder in that spot with all the files needed to play your presentation.
    • Important! Always publish to your local hard drive. Publishing to a network drive or a USB drive can create problems with your published output. After you publish your presentation to a local folder, upload the output to your LMS to test it.

Step 2: Enter Additional Project Info for the Articulate Mobile Player (Optional)

If learners use the Articulate Mobile Player, you can add more information by clicking the ellipsis button (...) next to the Title field on the Publish window. The following Project Info window appears.

  1. The Title and Description are the same as what you entered on the Publish window; change the text here if you like.
  2. The thumbnail below the Title field will appear for this presentation when learners browse content in their Articulate Mobile Player library. By default, Presenter uses an image of the first slide in your presentation, but you can choose a different image for the thumbnail. Just click the blue slide title text. Then select a different slide in your presentation, or click Picture from File and choose an image.
  3. AuthorEmailWebsiteDurationDate, and Version appear on the content information cards in the Articulate Mobile Player library.
  4. The Identifier field is a unique string of characters assigned by Presenter. Your LMS uses it to identify your content. If you're republishing an interaction that's already in your LMS, don't change the value in this field.
  5. Keywords aren't currently used. They'll be used in a future version of the Articulate Mobile Player app.

When you're finished customizing the fields on this window, click OK to return to the Publish window.

Note these important facts about mobile output:

  • Tracking in the Articulate Mobile Player is only supported in learning management systems that support the Tin Can API  specification.
  • If your LMS doesn't yet support Tin Can API and you need to track and report on learners’ results, don't include the Articulate Mobile Player option when publishing (see the next section for details). Learners will need to view your course in a browser that supports Flash or HTML5, so it can communicate results to your LMS.
  • If your LMS doesn’t support Tin Can API but you don’t need tracking, you might still be able to deploy your content via your LMS for viewing in the Articulate Mobile Player. However, not all LMSs allow content to be viewed in a mobile app, so you’ll need to test this with your own LMS to confirm.

Step 3: Choose HTML5 and/or Mobile Publishing (Optional)

If learners use mobile devices that doesn't support Flash, mark the following options to make content viewable in HTML5, the Articulate Mobile Player, or both.

  • Include HTML5 output: This prepares your presentation so it's viewable as HTML5 content if a learner doesn't have the Flash Player and they view your presentation in an HTML5-compatible browser. Keep in mind that not all browsers handle HTML5 content equally. This article identifies which browsers your learners should use if they need to view your presentation as HTML5 content.
  • Use Articulate Mobile Player for iOS or Android: This prepares your presentation so learners have the best viewing experience on mobile devices. If you mark this option, learners will view the content in the free Articulate Mobile Player app, which they'll be prompted to install when they launch the presentation if they don't already have it. (IMPORTANT: Tracking in the Articulate Mobile Player is only supported in learning management systems that support the Tin Can API specification. If tracking and reporting is crucial for your presentation but your LMS doesn't support Tin Can API, don't mark this option. If your LMS doesn't support Tin Can API but you don’t need tracking, you might still be able to deploy your content via your LMS for viewing in the Articulate Mobile Player. You’ll need to test this with your own LMS to confirm, since not all LMSs allow content to be viewed in a mobile app.)
  • Allow downloading for offline viewing: This option lets learners download your content to their Articulate Mobile Player app, so they can view it offline later. However, offline viewing isn't currently supported for LMS content. An internet connection is required to view track content in an LMS.

Step 4: Check Player Properties and Quality Settings

The Properties section of the Publish window is where you can make any last-minute changes to your course player or the compression settings Presenter uses when publishing.

  1. The Player field shows the name of the player that Presenter will use when you publish. (The player is the interface that users see when they view your presentation, and it can include things like player controls, resources, a menu, a glossary, and other features.) Click the player name if you'd like to make final adjustments or switch to a different player. If you need help choosing your player settings, see this tutorial
  2. The Quality field lets you control the compression settings Presenter uses for audio, video, and pictures you've added to your presentation. The settings here default to whatever you used the last time you published a Presenter project. To change the quality settings, click the blue text and change any of the fields as noted below, then click OK.
    • Choose Standard if you want to use the default settings. If you mark this option, the values on the window revert back to their defaults (video quality of 5, audio bitrate of 48kbps, and image quality of 80%).
    • Choose Custom if you want to define your own quality settings. Then click and drag the slider on any of the three values to change the compression. Using higher values means higher-quality output, but also larger file sizes (which means longer download times). Lower values mean smaller file sizes and faster download times, but the visual and audio quality will be lower.
  3. The Presenter drop-down lets you choose a presenter bio for this presentation. The presenter bio will appear in the sidebar of your published course. Click the ellipsis (...) button if you need to manage your library of presenter bios. Note: In order for the presenter bio to display in your published presentation, you'll need to enable the Presenter panel in your course player. Click here to learn how.

Step 5: Choose Your Tracking and Reporting Preferences

In the Properties section of the Publish window, click the Tracking field to open the following window, where you can choose options for the way your LMS tracks and reports learners' progress.

  1. Click the Reporting tab on the left edge of the window, and use the LMS selector to choose the standard to which you'd like to publish (ask your LMS administrator if you're not sure). Presenter supports Tin Can API, SCORM 2004, SCORM 1.2, and AICC.
  2. Complete the fields in the section called LMS Course Information and the section called LMS Lesson SCORM Information (only appears if you're publishing for SCORM). Some important notes about these fields:
    • If you've chosen Tin Can API as your reporting specification, you'll see a field called Launch URL. Use this to enter the full URL to the presentation.html file if you plan to host the content on a server that's separate from your LMS. Typically you'd host your content on a server separate from your LMS if your LMS supports Tin Can API but hasn't yet allowed private content authorization for mobile apps. Find out more here and here.
    • The Identifier field is a unique string of characters assigned by Presenter. Your LMS uses it to identify content. If you're republishing a presentation that's already in your LMS, don't change the value in this field.
  3. If the window includes a section called LMS Reporting, use the selector to choose the wording you'd like to use when expressing learners' status with regard to this presentation.
  4. Now click the Tracking tab on the left edge of the window and choose one of the following options:
    • Track using number of slides viewed: With this option, your LMS will determine whether a learner has passed or completed the course by monitoring the number of slides the learner has viewed. Use the selector to choose a number.
    • Track using quiz result: Select this option if your presentation includes a quiz that you want to use for tracking purposes. If you have more than one quiz, select the one you want to track.
  5. Click OK when you're finished setting up your tracking and reporting preferences.

Step 6: Publish

When you're finished choosing your publishing options, click the Publish button. Presenter creates your published output in the location you specified. When publishing is complete, you'll see the following Publish Successful dialog.

  • View Presentation: This launches the presentation in your web browser. If you want to test your published presentation, though, it's best not to do it this way. Since your published output was created specifically for use with an LMS, you should instead upload the published output to your LMS, and test it from there to make sure it behaves as expected in the environment where you plan to use it.
  • Email: This opens up a new email message with a zipped file of your published output attached. This might be helpful if your LMS administrator will upload the published output for you.
  • FTP: This opens a window where you can enter your FTP credentials and transfer the published output to a website (which isn't something you'd typically do if you've published for LMS).
  • Zip: This creates a zipped file of the published output in the location you specified on the Publish window. For LMS users, this is the most common choice. Then upload the zipped presentation to your LMS.
  • Open Folder: This opens a file viewer where you can see the files Presenter just created. There will be several folders and files which are needed to play your presentation. If your LMS requires that you identify a single launch file after you've uploaded your content, the file to point to is index_lms.html for SCORM/AICC content or presentation.html for Tin Can API content.

Step 7: Distribute Your Published Course

Now that you've published, it's time to upload the course to your LMS. The steps for this are slightly different for each LMS. Ask your LMS administrator if you need help uploading, launching, or tracking content.

When learners launch your course, they'll see the right type of content based on the device and browser they're using.

  1. Learners will see the Flash version of your course if their browser supports it.
  2. If learners are using iPads or Android tablets and you selected the Articulate Mobile Player option when you published, the course will launch in the app. (If they don't have the app installed, they'll be prompted to install it.)
  3. If learners are using iPads and you didn't select the Articulate Mobile Player option when you published, but you did select HTML5, the HTML5 output will launch in mobile Safari.
  4. If learners are using a browser without Flash and you marked the HTML5 option, they'll see the HTML5 output. (Click here for a list of supported HTML5 browsers.)