Articulate Live ’09 Recap: “Inspiring, Informative, Outstanding”

Written by Gabe Anderson — Posted in Company

“I’m working on my dissertation in instructional design and I’ve learned more today than I have in two years of theory and research coursework. It’s more practical. Today is well worth the money.”

-Michele Haywood
Global Elearning Consultants

Articulate Live ’09 attendees show off Captain Smiley

Live ’09 Overview

Last Monday more than 200 Articulate customers, staff, and industry speakers came together in Orlando, Florida for an action-packed day geared toward creating elearning heroes.

The conference opened with Cliff Atkinson, author of Beyond Bullet Points, who applied his Beyond Bullet Points approach to a rapid elearning course during the session. Right there in the session, people got to see how easy it is to transform a click and read type of course into one that is more story driven. From there the conference followed two tracks.

One track was focused on instructional design and creating effective learning, and the other was focused on using the software.

Customers & speakers Phil Corriveau, Gerry Wasiluk, Dan Rollins, and Brian Allen

Cliff Atkinson, Cathy Moore, Ray Jimenez, and Dave Anderson shared a common theme in that great e-learning courses tell a story, build a connection with the learner, and are media rich. They showed examples and provided easy-to-use methods for enabling these elements within your courses. To round out course-building success, Patti Shank provided tips on creating effective quizzes, and Ron Price of Articulate training partner Yukon Learning shared tips on how to effectively work with subject matter experts (SMEs).

Articulate MVPs Phil Corriveau, Brian Allen, Gerry Wasiluk, and our very own Tom Kuhlmann demonstrated hands-on tips and tricks on how to easily build courses with Articulate software that tell a story, connect with the learner, and effectively use media.

At the end of the day, we announced the Guru Award 2009 Winners — showcasing courses that possess these characteristics.

Best of all, the day was about building relationships and sharing knowledge within the Articulate community. Our e-learning expert lounge and case study presentations by Articulate customers Dan Rollins of Allianz, Brian McFarlin of the University of Houston, and Eric Berg of LINGOs, helped facilitate this.

Live ’09 Session Highlights

Some highlights from select sessions are below.

Strategies for Bolder, Clearer, and More Effective e-Learning Courses
Presented by Cliff Atkinson

  • Tell a story
  • Create an emotional connection to the learner
  • Be succinct
  • Use photos and images instead of words

How to Build Courses that Get Results
Presented by Cathy Moore

  • Use Action Mapping: Fast design for powerful elearning
  • Don’t do an information dump
  • Knowledge is not just information
  • Knowledge should lead to action
  • Identify a measurable business goal
  • Identify what people need to do
  • Design practice activities
  • Identify what people really, really need to know

Create Worthwhile Assessments and Multiple Choice Questions
Presented by Patti Shank

  • Determine worthwhile assessments
  • Measure learning and skills, provide valuable feedback
  • Two primary types of assessments: “Test” and performance assessments
  • Use clear and concise instructions when wording assessments
  • Understand when to use each Quizmaker question type

Energize your Learners with Interactive Scenarios
Presented by Ray Jimenez

  • Tell an emotional, real-life story to engage your learners
  • Use characters, conversations, conflicts, consequences
  • Understand the 7-step learning design phase
  • Use the natural flow of a story; allow learners to figure it out
  • Learners learn from real-life conflicts and consequences

Articulate MVP Session: How to Record Narration Like a Pro
Presented by Phil Coriveau

  • Nicely-recorded audio contributes greatly to the creation of engaging content
  • Poor audio can lead to dropouts
  • Use a script whenever possible (should not match the slide text)
  • Use Articulate Presenter for the script (Publish to Word feature)
  • Use a recording space with good acoustics (minimize background noise)
  • Conventional microphones typically yield the best audio quality
  • Give yourself time for setup and testing
  • Consistency is key
  • Defrag your hard drive if necessary
  • Record one slide at a time
  • Use The Levelator to make the most of your audio

This Ain’t your Grandma’s Quizzing Tool
Presented by Tom Kuhlmann

  • Quizmaker ’09 works for beginner or expert
  • Offers PowerPoint comfort
  • Re-use content
  • Use Quizmaker ’09 for quizzes, surveys, animations, scenarios. marketing, and more
  • Build using forms or freeform

Live ’09 Feedback

Cathy Moore sent us the below email following the event, which pretty much sums up the day and the exact sentiment I heard from a number of people:

—–Original Message—–
From: Cathy Moore
Sent: Thursday, March 12, 2009 1:07 PM
To: Mark Schwartz; Tom Kuhlmann; Gabe Anderson; Justin Wilcox
Subject: Thanks!

Dear Articulate team,

Thank you for organizing Articulate Live ’09. The attendees I spoke
with were all impressed by how the presenters focused on creating
powerful elearning
. I heard many comments about the common
instructional design threads that ran through the presentations,
especially many speakers’ emphasis on creating more visual, story-
based experiences

That type of cohesiveness is hard to create at a conference with many
speakers, and it shows your commitment to helping people create
memorable experiences with your products.
I was proud to participate
in a conference that was so clearly committed to high-quality
instructional design, and thanks for including me!


And here are a few comments we received about the day:

  • “Overall – great – can’t way to get home and try some of the of the things I saw.”
  • “Very well done, great use of time.”
  • “Well organized conference – this is a great experience. I can’t believe this if the first annual conference, thanks for a great experience.”
  • “This was a fantastic day. It left me wishing for more sessions – “
  • “Invaluable – Justin gave some great insights that will save me a lot of development time.”

Finally, here are a few videos that capture the spirit of the conference as well as the passion of Articulate customers:

Margaret Kelsey of Kelsey + Co (“Articulate has the best tool and the users’ conference has been fantastic”):

Lori Zittnan (“Articulate has a dynamite support group… Captain Smiley and I love Articulate!”):

Steve Heinen of Risk Management Inc. (“Thank you and the Articulate team for a great product, great customer support, and great community”):

You can view more photos on Flickr here, and you can join the discussion about Articulate Live ’09 here (even if you didn’t attend).

Thank you to everyone who joined us in Orlando, and to our speakers for helping us produce an incredibly successful event!

6 responses to “Articulate Live ’09 Recap: “Inspiring, Informative, Outstanding””


This looks like it was a great conference! I wish I could have been there. Something to shoot for next year – or maybe a regional users conference closer to home here in the West.

The attendee videos were a great idea! Bonus points for Phil’s surprise entrance (and graceful exit) from the scene in the 3rd video. There’s always *someone* trying to steal the spotlight, eh Phil? 😉

– Chris

eQuixotic // Posted at 4:43 pm on March 19th, 2009

Chris, what can I say…you have me all figured out 🙂 Sorry you couldn’t make the show…


Phil Corriveau // Posted at 9:43 pm on March 19th, 2009

[…] accepts the gold from Articulate EVP Mark Schwartz at Articulate Live ’09 in Orlando, FL Articulate also allows e-Mersion to significantly reduce the production budget for […]


Maybe Phil was trying to tell me something… like, “Hey, interview me!” Sorry I didn’t get the hint, Phil. 🙂

gabe // Posted at 11:03 am on March 20th, 2009

[…] of the exciting announcements at Articulate Live ’09 in Orlando earlier this month was that LINGOs, a consortium of humanitarian relief and development […]


Seen the Live ’09 highlight video?

gabe // Posted at 9:55 am on August 7th, 2009

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