iOLab > Using the Lesson Player

Document created by Digital Support on Feb 20, 2018Last modified by Digital Support on Mar 16, 2018
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The iOLab lesson player provides a mechanism for delivering step-by-step hands-on lessons to students online, saving their data and their responses to questions as an online lab report that can be graded by their instructor. As of iOLab software version 1.64.1457, the lesson player has the ability to create a printable PDF version of a student's lab report, and as of version 1.65.1484 we added a lesson import button.

Install latest software

To begin using the lesson player, make sure you have downloaded and installed the latest software version for Windows or Mac.

Download demo lesson

A demo lesson has been created to help you explore the capabilities of the lesson player. Download the file You can delete this file after you import the lesson.

You can import future lessons using the same process used here for the Demo lesson.

Import a lesson

Run the iOLab application and click on the folder icon.

  1. Click the Lesson list tab
  2. Click on the Import a lesson button
  3. Select the file in your Downloads folder
  4. Click the Open button

View the lesson in the lesson list

The demo lesson will now appear in your Lesson list tab, as shown below.

Notice that there is another lesson file there as well, called IOLab-documentation. This file came as part of the application (i.e. you didn't need to install it) and contains detailed documentation on the commands recognized by the Lesson Player. If you need to learn how to create lessons, read the documentation in this lesson.

Click on the lesson to open it

Open up the Demo lesson and take a look at what's included. The first page has a video that will show you some basics on how to use the lesson.

View lesson files

You can explore the elements of the actual lesson if you go to the Documents/IOLab-Workfiles/activities folder on your Mac or PC.


The Import_yyyy-mm-dd... folder contains the lesson material you just imported. Open the folder to find the Demo.html file that defines the lesson and the images folder that contains images used in the lesson. Opening the Demo.html file in any text editor will allow you to view and edit the html code of the lesson.


Creating a printable PDF Lab Report

As of iOLab software version 1.64.1457, the lesson player can create a PDF file for each completed step of a lesson.

In order to enable the PDF feature, you will need to install the free PDFtk toolkit:

To download a single printable PDF file of your entire lab, click the document icon under your lesson in the lesson list. You will not see this document icon until you install PDFtk as shown above.

Students can run the iOLab application without installing PDFtk. They just won't see the document icon. In this mode of operation, the instructor can still create the merged PDF file from a student's .lab file as long as students are using application version 1.64.1457 or later.