Get the Story on Adobe Flash in WebAssign

Product Updates & Training​
Reading Time: 2 minutes

[This post has been updated to reflect new Flash improvements and release dates for accuracy]

If you’ve been a long-time user of WebAssign, you’ve likely encountered Adobe Flash when working within the platform. If you are a new user, chances are you may never have seen it! Here’s why….

History Of Flash in WebAssign

Originally, Adobe Flash was the technology of choice to power our eBook reading experience (known as youBooks), our WebAssign graphing tool, and multimedia assets such as Watch Its. However, as all things technology tend to do, new technology comes along to continue to improve the user experience through ease of use and functionality.

Now: Converting Away from Flash

Over the past couple of years, the WebAssign team has been converting content that is reliant upon Adobe Flash, with the goal to eliminate Adobe Flash in all the current Cengage WebAssign courses by the end of 2020. We’ve made significant improvements throughout 2019, and have a few remaining for 2020 – see below.

  • Ebooks: The latest edition of most Cengage eBooks have been converted from the older Flash-based youBook format to a new format which eliminates the Flash experience in the eBook. There are a select number of Flash-based eBooks remaining that will be completed on a rolling basis by the end of Summer 2020.
  • Graphing and NumberLine Tools: Questions that require students to draw graphs or plot points on a number line previously used a Flash-based answer entry palette. However, in Spring 2020, new Graphing and NumberLine tools that don’t require Flash will be available for all courses. Learn more about the release here, or try a sample assignment.
  • Show My Work will no longer require Adobe Flash as of Spring 2020. Learn how to utilize the tool effectively here.
  • Watch Its and other multimedia assets: Most Watch Its for current edition titles have already been converted to an HTML5 player. The WebAssign content team is now auditing older backlist titles to convert remaining Watch Its. Some older asset types that required Flash have already been removed from WebAssign.
  • Pencil Pad Questions: Beginning in Spring 2020, we’ll say goodbye to our Pencil Pad question type that was created using Adobe Flash. Learn more about the removal and other question types you can use in place of Pencil Pad here.

Still have Flash in your course?

In the meantime, we encourage you to let your students know if they ever encounter Flash, to continue to download it. If they get this message – Flash Content Not Shown – they can visit the Student Online Help link to check to see if they have Flash and enable it if so, plus get directions to download if needed.

If you have specific questions regarding your Cengage WebAssign course, please reach out to your Learning Consultant for specifics.