Articulate Rise

Articulate have released a major update to Storyline with introduction of their subscription service Articulate 360. I've not had a chance to review all the new offerings provided in this update but definitely will be trying them all out. What initially caught my attention and got me excited was Rise, a rapid responsive eLearning development tool.

This is not a full review of the application but only my first impressions. I will probably update this once I've had more time to work with the application.

Rise fills the responsive gap that I've felt was very apparent in Articulate Storyline and, on first impressions, I was very impressed. First off, I'm an Adobe Captivate fanboy and although Captivate does allow you to create responsive projects, it can be very daunting managing all the different breakpoints and how your project will work on multiple devices.

Articulate Rise has tackled this issue beautifully by completely removing this complexity from the development process. Rise manages how your project will look on multiple devices effortlessly. Rise uses a very clean and modern approach to the visual design of elements in your project so you know that images and text will be easy to read when viewed on multiple devices and screen sizes. This means that you can focus on building content and not worry about your learning will work on multiple devices. Anyone who has worked with responsive projects in Captivate will understand how much time this can add to your development process.

Already I've seen multiple Rise demo projects produced in an incredibly short time, which is extremely impressive and people are loving it. Check out these demos.

These projects demonstrate just how rapid development of eLearning should be done... (here it comes)... but the first thing you notice about all these demos is that they all look very, very similar. This is where things started falling apart for me. Unfortunately, you are limited with the amount of customisation you can apply to your projects - you can change colours, fonts and imagery, but that is about the limit of visual customisation available. Now, I completely and totally understand why they have done this. You can not have the level of simplicity that Rise offers in creating responsive projects without this limitation.

The other immediate issue that put the brakes on my excitement of Rise was the limited quiz options available. At present, (I've been told that this will be changed shortly) you only have the option of single answer, multiple choice questions. Now, you can create other interactive quiz type questions in your projects, like drag and drop, but it is my understanding that these cannot be part of a quiz that reports to an LMS. This was the show stopper for me :(

I really like the potential that Rise is offering, but at this point, the customisations that our clients require for eLearning could not be handled by Rise, which is a shame. If you need to rapidly build learning for mobile devices, and you are not concern with creating highly customised experiences that must adhere to very specific branding constraints, and do not need complex quizzing options then Rise is going to be the perfect tool for you.

I'm definitely going to watch future developments of Rise as I'm extremely impressed with how well it can produce truely rapid eLearning applications that are fully responsive.