Yesterday I was creating a piece of elearning using Adobe Captivate. I had a file that consisted of 33 slides along with a 6 minute MP3 of my narrative.

When viewed by end users, the eLearning had to move from one slide to the next with no intervention from the learner, so I had to attach a duration to each slide.

How long should each slide be displayed for? I worked this out by listening to the audio file in an MP3 player and making a note of the time at the point where I wanted to move to the next slide.

Captivate, like PowerPoint, requires that the duration of each slide is defined in seconds but with over 30 slides I didn’t want to have to manually do the calculations.

So I turned to my “slide duration calculator”, something I built a while ago when I had been commissioned to create a number of “simple eLearning applications” (aka PowerPoint slides shows with narration).

Slide Duration Calculator

Column B stores the elapsed time at the start of each slide (for simplicity I’ve not listed all 33 slides!)

In C2 there is a formula to calculate the duration of slide 1. The formula is =B3-B2

In other words, the time at the start of slide 2 minus the time at the start of slide 1.

The formula is then copied down column C for all the other cells.

In B15 I manually typed the total duration (length of the MP3 file). This value has to be in B15 otherwise the formula in C14 will generate an error.

You can download the slide duration calculator here.