Storyline vs. Rise

Venn diagram comparing Articulate Storyline and Articulate Rise

When it’s time to create an elearning course, at some point you’ll need to decide what authoring tool to use.  There are many options, but it often comes down to a choice between two Articulate products: Storyline and Rise.  (For those new to the world of elearning, Articulate is a company that makes a variety of products, including Storyline and Rise.)

First, the similarities.

  • Both are SCORM compliant, meaning that they can be used with learning management systems.
  • Both can contain embedded audio and video.
  • Both can handle interactivity, for instance clicking on a marker to reveal text or an image.
  • Both can contain questions, and these questions may be graded or ungraded.

That’s a lot of similarities, and I’m sure you’ve already figured out that there are many situations where either Rise or Storyline will work.  Now, let’s take a look at some distinguishing features.

  • Storyline allows for much more flexibility when creating interactions.  In Rise, it’s only possible to use a limited number of common interaction types.  In Storyline, if you can imagine it, there’s a very good chance that you can create it.
  • Rise automatically ensures that content will be viewable on mobile devices and tablets, in addition to laptops and desktops.  Storyline does not do this.  It is possible to create modules on Storyline that work perfectly across devices and it is also possible to create modules that function well on one type of device and poorly on another type of device.
  • Building in Rise is generally much faster than building in Storyline.  In addition, because Rise does not allow as much leeway, quality assurance testing is faster in Rise than it is in Storyline.

As a general rule, if you want a straight-forward elearning module built quickly, Articulate Rise is an excellent choice.  If you want a creative, highly-interactive, customized module, Articulate Storyline is an excellent choice.