I would like to be able to ask a student a question such as 'What does the perfect woman look like'.
They would be able to enter their response in the form of a short answer.
As long as the answer contains any one of the key words smart or educated or passionate or caring then it would be marked correct.
Currently, no matter what I try, regardless of the keywords, it doesn't report the answers to be correct.
Which Captivate version are you referring to? Hopefully Captivate 4.
I think its not based on keywords in Short-Answer Question type.
The answer entered by the user (learner) should exactly match with the already fed acceptable answers. Hence Captivate allows more than one Acceptable answers.
Try if you can tweak your question to allow user (learner) write a more specific answer, which you must have already fed in your acceptable answers section.