July 12, 2024
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Microsoft PowerPoint Tutorial

Microsoft PowerPoint Tutorial

Microsoft PowerPoint helps you create noteworthy slide show presentations for teaching information and knowledge to viewers. Use this PowerPoint Tutorial and check out the video PowerPoint tutorial at the end of this article for more instruction.

Starting up PowerPoint is relatively this same as any other Microsoft application. In the startup screen, you can select Blank Presentation, pick a premade template style from the right side of the screen, or open a recent PowerPoint file. Follow the rest of this PowerPoint tutorial to learn how to use all the tools available at your fingertips.

How to Pin a Recent PowerPoint Presentation

When you first open PowerPoint, the left half of the screen has recent files. When you move the cursor over one of the files, a small pin shows up on the right end of the highlighted area. If you click the pin, it will ensure the file is on the first screen every time you open PowerPoint.

Using Templates

Instead of starting with a blank PowerPoint presentation, you can use a template instead, which provides a themed PowerPoint presentation that has all the design elements already in place. It saves a lot of time, especially if you need a professional-looking presentation.

The templates are on the first screen when you open PowerPoint, on the right side. Click one of these templates or search for online templates and themes using the search bar on top.

Basic PowerPoint Navigation

On the very top of the PowerPoint window are tabs, and right below that is the ribbon. The tabs contain categories of tools and make it easier to find everything. In each of the categories within a tab, for instance, the Clipboard or Font group on the Home tab, there is a small arrow in the bottom right corner that you can click to expand more options. This arrow is the launch button.

When you edit a PowerPoint slide show, the current slide will be the biggest item on your screen. The other slides in that presentation are on the left, shown by small thumbnails that you can click to jump between slides.

Locating the Tell Me Box

The Tell Me feature is unique to Microsoft. Type a general search in the Tell Me box to see suggestions for tools that you can use.

How to Insert a PowerPoint Slide

To add a slide using the Home tab, click the New Slide button on the ribbon. You can also find this button under the Insert tab. For a blank PowerPoint slide, click the top of the New Slide button, but for other types of slides, click the bottom half of the button, which has options for different slide layouts.

Another way to add a slide is by right-clicking in the side panel and selecting New Slide.

Adding Text Boxes

To insert a regular text box, use the Text Box tool in the Text group of the Insert tab. It will immediately create a spot to type on the current slide. To move text boxes around after typing, click the outer edge of the text box so that it changes from a dotted line to solid, and then you can click and drag to move it around the slide. To rotate the text box, click and hold the circular arrow at the top of the box while you move the mouse to rotate.

Presenting a Slide Show

Upon completing a slide show, you can present it in full screen right in Microsoft PowerPoint. On the Slide Show tab, there are a few options for playing the show. You can play it from the beginning, from the current slide, or present the show online. You can also change the timings of the slides from this tab.

Another way to play the slide show presentation is by clicking the Play Slide Show button in the bottom right corner of the window.

When you are presenting a slide show, you can go through the slides using the left and right arrows on your keyboard, the spacebar, or by clicking the mouse.

If you want to leave the slide show, press the ESC key.

How to Reorder Presentation Slides

When you are in editing mode in PowerPoint, you can see thumbnails for each of the slides on the left panel. Within this panel, simply click and drag the thumbnails around to the order you want.

How to Add a Design to a Slide

For a central design for all the slides in a presentation project, you can select one of the design themes under the Design tab. This action changes every slide and offers variants for each when you click on them.

If you want to change the design of a single slide or a selective few, still go to the design tab, but right-click when you find the design you want to use. In the right-click menu, it will give the option to apply the design to selected slides. To select more than one slide before choosing a design, click a thumbnail, then hold CTRL while you select the others.

Slide Master

The Slider Master is a tool you can find in the View tab. When you click Slide Master, it pulls up a new tab called Slide Master that provides a better layout for changing slide themes, background styles, slides sizes, and more.

Change Fonts

In PowerPoint, you can change the fonts the same way as you would in Microsoft Word. Use the Font group tools on the Home tab or triple-click on a line of text to get a shortcut menu with font options.

To add a picture or texture inside the font of a word, select the text, and then go up to the Drawing Tools Format tab that appears next to the Help tab. You can then hit the Shape Fill button to add anything you like into the font.

Customizing Slide Backgrounds

There are a few ways you can format the background of a slide.

One way is by searching for “background” in the Tell Me search box and selecting Format Background from the list of options.

Another way is by right-clicking on a slide and selecting Format Background. Both methods take you to the same place and bring up the Format Background panel on the right side of the screen.

On the Format Background panel, you can change the color of the background, the transparency of that color, and you can even use a pattern, picture, or texture fill. Make sure, after you change settings under Format Background, you click Apply to All. Otherwise, hit Reset Background to undo the changes you just made.

While you have Format Background open, try selecting some text on the current slide. The panel changes to Format Shape. This is where you can easily change the font fill and other text formatting.

How to Insert WordArt on a Slide

To quickly insert WordArt, go to the Insert tab and select the WordArt tool. Click one of the WordArt styles, then type what you want the WordArt to say. Once you add a piece of WordArt, you can make changes to it using the Drawing Tools Format tab, and then change that size of it using the small circles on the corners of the WordArt image.

Insert a Picture

On the Insert tab, you can select Pictures or Online Pictures to insert a picture. To add a picture from the files on your computer, click Pictures. If you want to add clipart, select Online Pictures.

When you insert a picture from your computer, a box will appear with some options. It should look like this:

If the picture you need to insert is in a folder other than the one open, scroll through the files on the left to find the right one and click it. Then, click the image you need and hit Insert.

How to Remove the Background on an Image

First, to access the format settings and tools for an image, double-click on it to pull up the Picture Tools Format tab.

There, you will find different formatting options, including a Remove Background tool.

Make sure you have the image you want to change selected. Click the Remove Background tool and then look at the image to make sure everything you want to disappear in the background is highlighted in pink. If there is anything wrong, you can use the tools up top to either mark areas to remove or to keep. When you click one of these tools, you will click directly on parts of the image to change the highlighted area. Select the Keep Changes button after finishing.

Adding Animations to Images

Click an image on your current slide and select the Animations tab. Various animation options become available to you for adding animations to images. When you select an animation, the image will now move when you play the slide show. Some animations, like Swivel, make the picture spin when the slide comes up, and others add a transition, such as Fly In or Float In.

To preview the animations, play the slide show from the current slide. Some animations have Effect Options, which you can change using the Effect Options button on the ribbon. Make sure to select the image first before changing the Effect Options.

You will see small numbers appear by each of the images when you add an animation. These indicate the order of which the animations will happen during the slide show presentation. To change the order of transitions – go to the Animations tab, and, on the very end of the ribbon, there is a group of tools for Timing. Select Move Earlier or Move Later to change the order of the animations.

Slide Transitions

You can change slide transitions through the Transitions tab in your tools. When you select a transition, it will apply only to the current slide. Preview it by clicking the Preview button on the left side of the ribbon or by playing the entire presentation.

How to Save a PowerPoint Presentation

Go to the File tab, click Save As, and select the location you want to save it. From now on, you can just press Save, and it will save to that same location on your computer.

10 Helpful Tips for Using PowerPoint

Use these 10 tips to help you use PowerPoint. There are tons of tools that you can utilize to make PowerPoint presentations look more appealing. The design of a presentation makes it easier for people to absorb the information you are presenting. Follow these tips and practice making slide shows on your desktop at home.

1. Look at Design Ideas

In addition to using the design styles in the Design tab, use the Design Ideas tool. You can find this tool hidden at the very right of the ribbon in the Design tab. When you click Design Ideas, it pulls up several ideas for that slide that you can use; most of these look more professional that the regular styles above, and they show ideas for every type of slide.

2. Use the Eyedropper

The eyedropper tool allows you to pull colors from other images on the slide and use them to fill text font. To find the eyedropper tool, make sure you are on the Home tab, select the Font Color button, and then go to Eyedropper at the bottom of the drop-down list. Once you click it, your cursor will switch to the eyedropper tool, which you can use to go to an image and click the color you want to grab.

3. Turn on Guides, Grid Lines, and Rulers

On the View tab, click the boxes for Ruler, Gridlines, and Guides. Each of these will help you make sure all the elements on a slide are in a nice alignment and do not look scattered or unprofessional. Gridlines do not need to be on all the time but leave the Guides and Ruler on and use the Gridlines when adding images.

When you have the Gridlines turned on, you can also snap objects to the grid by clicking the small arrow on the bottom right-hand corner of the Show group in the View tab.

4. Morph Transitions in PowerPoint

You can find the Morph transition on the Transitions tab in PowerPoint. When you choose Morph, you can move objects around on the slide to make them morph when presenting. Click Morph again after making changes.

5. Remove Image Backgrounds in PowerPoint

Removing image backgrounds makes the slides in a presentation look more presentable, and not like everything is boxed-shaped.

We talked about removing background earlier in this tutorial, and you can learn more by scrolling up to the section: How to Remove the Background on an Image.

6. Ink Equation

You can add a mathematical equation by using the Ink Equation tool. Go to the Insert tab, click Equation, then go down to the Ink Equation button at the bottom of the drop-down menu.

The Math Input Control box that should pop up looks like this:

Use the yellow space to draw a math equation with your mouse. The tool will translate what you draw into a typed-out equation. This feature saves time finding math symbols and other elements that are not easy to access.

7. Reorder Lists with ALT + SHIFT

When you have a list in a slide and do not have time to move everything around to fix the order, the fastest way to change it is by selecting an item in the list and holding down ALT + SHIFT while using the arrow keys to move it up or down in the list.

8. Copy with CTRL Drag

When you have a selected image that you want to copy to make multiples of it on the slide, hold down the CTRL key while dragging the image, each time you move it, a copy generates. You can also do this with text boxes.

9. Edit Shape Points

You can change the overall form of a shape by editing the shape points. Do this through the Edit Shape button on the Drawing Tools Format Tab. Remember that this tab will not show up unless you have a shape selected. Click and drag the points on the shape to change it.

If you want to add another side to the shape, right-click on the shape (while the Edit Shape tool is open) and click Add Point.

10. Animate charts in PowerPoint

Charts are easier to understand if each element of the chart shows up individually. To do this, you will want to animate the chart. Click the chart, then choose an animation from the Animations tab. Now, go to Effect Options, and select the option – By Series.

Create Free PowerPoint Templates

You can use a program called Canva to design free templates for PowerPoint. It helps you create professional templates for thumbnails, infographics, and other elements that you can use in PowerPoint.

For an in-depth tutorial on how to use Canva, visit the Free Graphic Design – Canva 2.0 tutorial video on YouTube, or watch it here.

Click here – sign up for Canva

Any element you add to your PowerPoint presentations to make it look more professional will make the information you present seem believable and easy to understand by your audience. Utilize every tool you learned in this PowerPoint tutorial to achieve this and practice as much as you can.

Here are some helpful PowerPoint tutorials:

Written by
Jamie Keet
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