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Inserting a Timer

CourseBuilder enables you to insert Timer controls into Web pages. Many different timer graphics that are quite clever are available. You can choose from a director's clapboard, an hourglass, various rising bars, and other graphics. A Timer control is usually placed in a Web page that already contains a CourseBuilder interaction and is especially useful in certification situations where the learner is limited to a certain period for a specific question.

TIP

You can save your own custom button images in the \Dreamweaver\CourseBuilder\SupportFiles\Images\Buttons\ directory. Remember how CourseBuilder copied images and scripts the first time you added a CourseBuilder interaction to your site? If you place images in this directory, they will be copied to your site along with all the other default images.

In this example, you open one of the questions you've already created and add a Timer control. In the next chapter, you'll modify the Timer interaction so that it disables the CourseBuilder interaction question after the time is up. Table 10.7 lists the two different types of Timer control interactions.

Table 10.7 Timer Control Interactions

Icon

Interaction Name

Description

Single-trigger timer

Has a single trigger time for giving the learner feedback.

Two-trigger timer

Has two trigger times for giving the learner feedback.


The Timer control interactions enable you to add trigger times, points in time at which some sort of feedback is given to the learner. You can add as many of these triggers as you want.

To add a Timer control to a Web page, follow these steps:

  1. Open a Web page with an existing CourseBuilder Interaction.

  2. Insert a CourseBuilder interaction. Select the Timer category and click on the two-trigger timer, the second icon from the left.

Using the General Tab

You set up the look and functionality of the Timer control in the General tab of the CourseBuilder Interaction dialog box:

  1. Click the General tab. Leave the default interaction name in the Name text box.

  2. Select Small_Rising_Bars (or any of the timer choices) in the Appearance drop-down list. You'll see a preview of what the timer looks like, as shown in Figure 10.24.

Figure 10.24 You can select various timer graphics in the General tab of the Timer control interaction.

  1. Set the timer duration to 30 seconds in the Duration text box.

  2. Judge the interaction when any trigger condition is met.

  3. Correctness does not matter, as this interaction will not be judged.

  4. Tries are unlimited.

  5. Leave the Reset button unchecked but select the Layer check box.

Using the Triggers Tab

The Triggers tab enables you to set up single or multiple triggers that occur during the duration of the timer. In this interaction, you give the user a warning 10 seconds before the timer ends. You can always add triggers in this tab if you need more than the default number. To set up Trigger1 and Trigger2, follow these steps:

  1. Select Trigger1 in the Triggers list box. You can leave the default name in the Name text box.

  2. Enter 20 seconds in the Trigger Once After text box. This is a warning message to the user 10 seconds before the second and final trigger at 30 seconds.

  3. Leave both the trigger and the interaction as Not Judged in the Interaction Is drop-down list. You might want to add judging or a score to a Timer interaction if the learner is supposed to get extra points for completing the question before the timer is up. The Triggers tab looks like Figure 10.25.

Figure 10.25 Set up the individual triggers to occur at a set time.

  1. Repeat the preceding steps for Trigger2, making sure the Trigger Once After text box is set to 30 seconds.

Using the Action Manager Tab

The Timer control interaction's Action Manager tab has two segments, one for each of the triggers. Edit the Popup Message behaviors to warn learners that they have only 10 seconds left in the Trigger1 pop-up message, and tell them they are out of time in the Trigger2 pop-up message. A disadvantage of using the Popup Message behavior here is that the timing continues while the message box is onscreen, and learners are required to click the OK button in the message box before they can proceed, thus losing valuable time.

Click the OK button to save your CourseBuilder interaction settings. Preview the Web page in a browser and make sure the Timer control works. In Chapter 11, you'll cause it to disable the test question when time runs out.

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