Frequently Asked Questions

Overview of CourseAssembler

Course Assembler lets you quickly compile your existing content into a package that is ready to upload to your Learning Management system that supports SCORM.

Documents are (typically) split into multiple pages, and a menu or other naviagation system lets your users step through pages one at a time.

You can use most common files from all the regular sources (PDF, Microsoft, Open Office, Google, Apple, YouTube, Vimeo, etc).

You can add audio or video to spice up your pages. You can make the pages turn when the media has finished playing.

It's possible to choose various designs for the navigation. We don't modify your content, just wrap it in a layer that makes it easy for users to step through the pages. You can edit these designs yourself.

There's no collaborative features at this time. There's no AI integration to mess with your data. Your privacy is our number one concern.

What do I need to run this app?

This app runs entirely on your web browser. It was designed with a desktop environment in mind.

Any modern browser fom 2023 or later will be fine - Safari, Chrome, Firefox.

Your learners should be able to use any browser from the last 5 years. Encourage them to keep up to date.

Mobile devices (phones, tablets, etc) generally do not have the memory or file system to run the app - they may work for you, but are not supported.

Content that you export should be fine in most cases and is often dependant on the capabilities of the system you import your package in to.

Who owns the content?

You do.

We don't store it.It's temporarily sent to the cloud for conversion, but is deleted immediately afterwards. Your content is stored by your own browser, which is permanent until you reset the app. So after you are finished, remember to reset (especially if you are using a shared computer).

We keep any courses on our server that you specifically tell us to store. These are tied to your licence key and only accessible to you. These are automtically deleted once your licence expires.

We do keep your email address on file, and we track some details about how you use our software (which settings are most popular so we can keep improving), and try to store abstract analytics data (nothing personally identifiable). We try to perform analytics but your adblocker probably stops us.

What file formats are supported?

If a file format can convert to HTML5, it’s a safe bet we support it. Formats with functionality, transitions and effects or embedded resources are typically included in the converted content (e.g. spreadsheets, powerpoint files with embedded video, slide transitions, etc). A list of common formats is below:

ppt
pptm
pptx
doc
docm
docx
pdf
png
pps
ppsx
jpg
gif
bmp
odp
odt
ods
txt
xls
xlsm
xlsx
rtf
md (markdown)

See this link for more information.

What is or is not supported during conversion?

Not all elements of file can be supported in the output. For instance, forms or app-specific interactions, buttons, etc.

Powerpoint / Keynote / Google Slides

  • Presentations with OLE-embedded media is not supported (e.g. a spreadsheet embedded in a powerpoint file)
  • Audio and Video that is embedded (stored within) presentation files isn't supported. Special note Linked media such as Vimeo or YouTube should appear in place for Google Slides and Microsoft Powerpoint based presentations. Other products that can produce pptx files (OpenOffice, Libre Office, OnlyOffice, etc) may not work.
  • Transitions, animations, on-screen effects will not play.

PDF / Google Docs / Word, etc

  • Documents with multiple orientations or non-standard page layouts are not supported.
  • Forms and merge fields are not supported

Image formats

  • Webp is not currently supported in all browsers and is not reccomended for use
How do I load a course I have previously built?

You can drop packages you have made back onto the app. Just press Import and follow the on-screen prompts. You can also save courses to the server and load them again later.

Can I save my quiz and re-use in another course?

You can export a single quiz to a JSON file by editing the Quiz and pressing the Export to JSON button (right next to Save). JSON is a format designed for machines to read easily, but humans can too (kind of). You could edit it in any text file editor such as VSCode, Notepad or Sublime Text. You can then import the quiz JSON file back in to the app which will make a new copy of that quiz for you to modify. If you're having trouble re-importing your JSON file after you've edited it, make sure that it is "valid" by using a tool such as JSONLint which will tell you if it has any mistakes in it.

If you are planning to re-use a set of common content across multiple packages (for instance an intro video, one or more quizzes, perhaps a standard thankyou page you made in Photoshop, etc) you can build a simple course just containing those elements and store it to our server or export it to a zip file - a template. Then, when you build your next course just drag that exported template back on and its content and quizzes and such will be appended to the course you have loaded. Then just drag the elements into the correct positions or remove the items you don't want, and you are good to go.

Are there any keyboard shortcuts?

You bet. You can drag items up and down on the left index to change the order of items, or indent/outdent items to change how they list in some templates. These actions also have keyboard shortcuts:

(Note: If you are on a Mac, substitute ⌃ Ctrl with ⌘ Command.)

Renaming pages

  • Enter: Rename the selected item (press Enter again to save changes, or Esc to revert changes).
  • You can also Double-click an item to put it into Rename mode.

Selecting pages

  • Up arrow / Down arrow: Navigate (select) items.
  • Left arrow: Outdent an indented item
  • Right arrow: Indent an outdented item
  • Shift + Up arrow / Down arrow: Move the selected item up one place the list.
  • Shift + Down arrow: Move the selected item down one place the list.
  • Ctrl + Shift + Up arrow: Move the selected item to the top of the list.
  • Ctrl + Shift + Down arrow: Move the selected item to the bottom of the list.

Delete functions

To perform any delete function just using the keys, you have to double-press either the Delete or Backspace keys.

  • Delete: Deletes the selected page
  • Ctrl + Delete: Deletes the selected page and its children (pages below it that are indented)
How does completion work?

SCORM is the existing standard that lets reusable, platform-agnostic content communicate data to the host LMS. In most cases this boils down to a single question: Has the user completed the content? And in most courses, this is really what you care about.

In many content authoring packages on the market today, SCORM and completion settings seem unnecessarily complicated, but they don't have to be.

In our tool we have made some fundamental assumptions based on years of experience in what customers want.

  • The score of the course represents how much is completed (as a percentage).
  • Learners may leave and return more than once before they complete. We remember where they are up to, even for most embedded content.
  • Completion occurs either when the user views the last page, or gets to a certain point in the course (such as has completed 7 out of 10 pages).
  • Tracking individual pages and satisfying objectives at a page level generally doesn't happen (it's usually done at a unit, course or activity level).

We keep things simple and assume there's only two ways to progress through a course. Either page-by-page in order (like a book) or any order (you can skip pages if you choose). So there's only two settings.

Plus, you can get a completion for watching some or all of a video, or viewing a SlideShare presentation. You can track how much of the media the user has watched and score the page based on that information.

You can use your LMS's SCORM tracking tool to examine how much of a video a user has watched, plus if they get more than (say) 75%, they get a completion too.

What about xAPI?

xAPI is not yet supported, but we are considering adding support for it.

Can I edit files?

Generally no, but sometimes yes!

Editing is best handled in the application that produces the content in the first place. That might be Google Slides, or a Word document that's on your computer. Get your content ready first, then let this app convert it to its final lms-ready form. Conversion is a cinch anyway.

If a format type allows editing (such as Markdown), there will be an edit button on the toolbar.

What format do I choose?

There are various packaging types all designed for specific uses. The outputs include SCORM 1.2 and SCORM 1.4, IMS Content Packaging and No Wrapper (and xAPI is coming soon).

SCORM ouput is ideal for Learning Managment implementation where tracking is required. Most LMS's support SCORM 1.2 so pick that if you don't know what the difference is.

No Wrapper packaging is ideal if you want to include the content somewhere other than in a LMS, such as a WordPress web site (typically within an iframe).

xAPI support is not yet an option but is forthcoming. If you require it you may choose to host your content on Scorm Cloud which can add an xAPI wrapper to SCORM content.