"How to" Guideline series is coordinated by Helen Mongan-Rallis of the Education Department at the University of Minnesota Duluth. If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions to improve these guidelines please me at e-mail hrallis@d.umn.edu.

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Introduction to Power Point 2000/2001

Developed by
Helen Rallis April 2001
(adapted from original guidelines developed by Helen Rallis & Al Roline)

Overview of topics in these guidelines

In this Introduction to PowerPoint you will learn to do the following:

  1. Open the PowerPoint program
  2. Create Slides
  3. View Power Point Presentation
  4. Changing the order of slides, deleting slides, and duplicating slides
  5. Change the design of slides (apply design)
  6. Insert and format text
  7. Insert Headers and Footers
  8. Move and resize text boxes and objects
  9. Insert Clip Art
  10. Create build effects
  11. Create transitions
  12. Insert Photographs, video clips, and sound
  13. Draw your own graphics
  14. Change the color of an object
  15. Insert text boxes
  16. Creating Charts (Graphs)
  17. Print

Free: Download Power Point Viewer (for PCs) -- to show a Power Point Presentation even if you don't have the Power Point program

Opening the Power Point program and making selection

Open the PowerPoint program (choose whichever method you prefer). Once it opens, the following screen (called a dialogue box) will appear:

opening screen choices

This screen prompts you to make a selection from the following:

For the purposes of this exercise, click on the circle next to Blank presentation and then click on the OK button.

Creating Slides

You can create new slides in a variety of ways:

This will take you to the new slide dialog box (see below) which shows you the choices of slide layouts. You can now choose the format for your next slide. Example: Title slide, bulleted slide, graph slide, 2 column text slide, text and clip art slide. Move the pointer over each of the slide choices, clicking once on each (don't double click as this will create a slide). As you click on each slide the name of the slide format appears in the gray box on the right. Explore the different layout options that are available.

screen shot of choose auto layout

Create a title slide:

Since the first slide of a presentation is usually the title slide, start your presentation by double clicking on the title slide. A title slide will appear. The words Click to add title and click to add subtitle are shown in dotted boxes. Click on the first box and type in the name of your presentation. Then click in the next box, this time typing in your name and any other information you might want to include in the subtitle box.

Bulleted list slide:

  1. Add a bulleted list slide.
  2. Type in a title for the slide in the space provided. [Tip: Use the same format for all slide titles, so if if you capitalize the title on one slide, do this on all slides, or use lower case on all]
  3. Click where it says add text and type the first bulleted point. Notice that a bullet appears in front of the phrase.
  4. Press the enter key. A new bulleted line appears.
  5. To change the bullet appearance:
  6. Click on the Format menu and select bullet. This will produce a Bullet dialog box that enables you to choose the bullet symbol, color, and size. When you click once on a symbol, an enlarged image of the bullet will appear so you can see what it will look like. When you have found one you like, click the OK button. Experiment with different bullet formats.
  7. If you want to indent items within a bulleted list to create a sub-list, select the items you want to indent and then click on the demote button on the tool bar.
  8. PowerPoint 2000 uses AutoFit Text which automatically resizes the text to fit the size of the text box. Thus, if you only have a few words of text in your bulleted list, the font size will be large. As you add more text, the font size will automatically be adjusted to become smaller.

    animation showing AutoFit Text

    If you view these guidelines online, this image will be animated. In the animated version it shows:
    (a) larger size text when there are only four items in the bullet list
    (b) smaller size text when there are five items in the list

    [animated image taken from www.microsoft.com]

Viewing PowerPoint Presentations

Tri-Pane View:

The new Tri-Pane View is a new feature of Power Point 2000/2001. It allows you to add slides, double-check your outline, edit and reformat text, and type commentsˇall in one combined view. This means that you don't have to jump between slides or slide views to keep track of your points. This also means that it takes you less time to create your presentation.

Screen shot showing tri-pane view
Screen shot showing the tri-pane view.

(a) On the left is the outline view of the slides showing the text that appears on each.
(b) On the right is the slide view, showing text, images, and background.
(c) On the bottom is the notes page view, showing the presenter notes that accompany the slide.
[image taken from www.microsoft.com]

You can resize each of these 3 panes by clicking on the border or frame of the pane. When you do this the cursor becomes a two-sided arrow. Drag this over to increase or decrease the size of the pane.

Slide Views:

In addition to the Tri-Pane view (described and shown above) Power Point presentations can be shown in 5 different views. To see the sample presentation in each of these views, click the View menu. This will list the following views:

Practice using each of the views. You can switch among view options either by using the View menu or clicking on the small view buttons shown at the bottom left of the screen. When you hold the selection arrow over them the name of the view will appear, making it easier for your to locate the view you want.

Changing the order of slides, deleting slides, and duplicating slides

To change the order:

In outline view:

    1. Click on the icon symbol that of the slide you want to move (you can tell that when you have selected it because the icon becomes highlighted and the cursor changes into the four-arrows symbol).
    2. Drag the slide to the point at which you now want it to appear in your presentation
    3. Release the mouse button.

In the slide sorter:

    1. Choose the slide sorter view (from menu or by clicking on the slide sorter icon on the tool bar). This will display the slides in rows.
    2. Click on the slide you want to move, drag the slide to its new position
    3. Release the mouse to "drop" the slide into its new location.

To delete a slide:

Either the outline or in the slide sorter view, click on the slide and hit the delete key.

To duplicate a slide:

    1. Either in the outline or in the slide sorter view, click on the slide
    2. From the menu choose edit --> duplicate (or use the short-cut control-D). [This is a useful feature if you want to create a number of slides that have the same design. Simply create one and then duplicate it as many times as you need in order to create the required number of slides].

Changing the design of slides (apply design)

PowerPoint comes with a series of slide designs. You can change the design of the slides by:

  1. From the Format menu --> select Apply Design Template. When you do this a Apply Design Template dialog box appears.
  2. Click on designs in the list to preview what they look like (a small picture of the design will show in a window when you click once on a design name). When you find one that you like, click the apply button.
  3. Even though the design you have chosen may look good on your computer screen, it may not necessarily be effective when projected on a screen (the font on some designs is difficult to read). You should therefore check this before giving a presentation, or if this is not possible, select a design that you know works well, such as dark text on light background, or white text on black background.

Tip: If you intend to print handouts of your slides (usually 3 or 6 slides per page), you can preview what your slides will look like in black and white by clicking on the View menu --> select Black and White (Windows) or Grayscale (Mac). This is important to do as when printed in black and white, some slide designs make it very difficult to read the text.

Inserting and formatting text

Once you have created a slide you can type text in the pre-formatted text boxes provided on the slide, or you can create text boxes. For pre-formatted text boxes:

  1. Click in the text box and begin typing. The font size, color, and style will be predetermined by the presentation design that you have chosen (Later you can experiment with changing the Presentation Design and notice how the font changes). You can change the font, but do so with caution as the default has been selected for what works best for each slide layout and design.
  2. To change font size: Drag across the words you wish to reformat, then from the format menu bar select font. This will bring up the Font dialog box which allows you to change the font, font style, size, effects, and color.

(You can also change the font color by clicking on the font color button on the drawing tool bar and the font size button on the formatting toolbar)

Inserting Headers and Footers

For professional presentations it is a good idea to create a header or footer to display information about your presentation on every slide (example: to display your name and organization).

  1. From the menu bar, choose View -- > Header and Footer. This will bring up the header and footer dialog box.
  2. Click on the the slide tab:
  3. Click on the notes and handouts tab:
  4. Click Apply to All to have the header and/or footer to appear on all slides or Apply to have your choices to apply only to the currently selected slide.

Moving and resizing text boxes and objects

  1. To move any object, click and hold down the mouse button so that the pointer turns into a 4-way arrow. Then drag the object to the desired destination and unclick to "drop" the object.
  2. To resize a box or object, click and drag on one of the top, side, or corner boxes (handle bars). resize handles icon
  3. The top and side ones make the object narrower or shorter (and do not keep the original proportions of the object). The corner handlebars enable you to reduce the object size while maintaining its original proportions.

Inserting clip art

Clip art refers to pictures that can be inserted into presentations. Power Point comes with a library of clip art. This can be inserted in a variety of ways:

Any of the above options will open the clip art gallery dialog box. Then:

Creating build effects

Usually you should use build effects only for slides that have separate lines of text and for which it is appropriate to have participants see one line at a time rather than the full text. You may also use this if want images to appear at a different time than the text.

  1. Have open the slide that you wish to animate.
  2. From the menu select Slide Show --> choose Animation --> Custom animation. This will bring up the Custom Animation dialog box.
  3. A small picture of your slide appears in the preview window and a list of the objects on your slide in the adjacent window.
  4. In the preview window, click on the object or text that you want to animate (usually the bulleted text box, which will be called something like, "Text 2." ("Text 1" is usually the page title).
  5. Under the effects tab choose the entry and sound from the pull down menus (so that items appear one at a time from the direction you choose and making the sound you choose).
    Tip: While it's fun it create presentations that have items appearing randomly and with sound effects, for the audience this is very distracting. It's usually more effective to have items appear as fast as possible from the same direction, without any sound.
  6. If you want a line of text to dim once the next line of text appears, under After animation select the dim color. You can preview what this looks like by clicking on the Preview button. This dim effect helps your audience focus on the point you are discussing, but still allows them to see the whole list.
  7. Under the Order and Timing tab, select the order in which you want the items on the slide to appear and also select what will initiate the animation (mouse click or timer). It's best to set this to on mouse click if you are going to be giving the presentation (if you want the presentation to loop automatically, choose that option, but for now use the former choice).

Creating transitions

  1. From the menu select Slide Show and then --> choose Slide Transition. This will bring up the Slide Transition dialog box.

    screen shot of slide transition box
  2. Click on the arrows next to where it says No Transition and select one of the options. Tips: It's usually best:
    a. to have the slides advance on mouse click rather than automatically
    b. to have the slides advance without any sound (distracts and then annoys!)
    c. As fast as possible -- so click on the fast button and also select a transition that appears rapidly.
  3. Usually it's best to have the same transitions for all slides, so select the Apply to all button.

Inserting photographs, video clips, and sound

To insert photographs, video clips, or sound, you follow a similar procedure to inserting clip art (see above).

From the Insert menu, select Picture and then follow the arrow to the right and select From File. You will be prompted to identify the source of the picture. Locate the drive and folder in which you have the picture/video/sound (best to keep it in the same folder as the rest of your power point presentation). Alternative option for photographs: Open the picture, copy it (using edit -- copy), switch to your power point presentation, and paste the photo into the slide.

(Note: Inserting photographs, video clips, or sound is covered in detail in the Intermediate Power Point Workshop)

Drawing your own graphics

To insert lines, boxes, and an assortment of shapes you will use the drawing tool bar.

  1. Autoshapes allows you to create a variety of shapes:
    screen shot of auto shapes choices
    Select from the list and then move the pointer onto the slide. The pointer will turn into a cross. Click with the cross at the point where you want to draw the shape and drag across the screen, then release. You can then resize the object using the handlebars, or change the object color (see "Changing background color of the box" and "Moving and resizing text boxes and objects" above).
  2. arrow iconThe arrow is for drawing different kinds of arrows. Click on this and then move the pointer onto the slide. The pointer will turn into a cross. Click with the cross at the point where you want your arrow to begin and drag across the screen, then release. To choose the style of the arrow, click on the arrow that you have drawn and then select the arrow style icon from the tool bar:

    arrow style icon
    Click on the style of your choice from the list that appears.
  3. line iconThe line is for drawing lines, and works in the same way as the arrow. You can also change the line style by using the line and dash style icons found on this same tool bar.
  4. shadow iconThe shadow and 3-D tools are for creating shadow and 3-D effects on other images. To use these you first have to draw an autoshape or a box using the rectangle or oval tools
  5. Click on the rectangle or oval rectangle icon and follow the same steps as you would for drawing an autoshape (see above). Once you have drawn your image on the screen, click on it and then select either the shadow or 3-D icon. Make your selection from the shadow or 3-D choices that appear.

Changing the color of an object

  1. Double-click on the object to bring up the Format AutoShape dialog box. Select the Colors and Lines tab.
  2. Click on the color and select the desired color from the choices that appear, or click on More Colors to give you a wider choice of colors. When you have made your choice, click OK.
  3. Fill Effects: In the Format AutoShape dialog box:
    1. select the Colors and Lines tab, Click on the color and choose Fill Effects.
    2. Click on the One Color radio button and move the slider all the way over to Light.
    3. Under Shading Styles, select any of the shading styles you think would be attractive (Hint: click on the radio buttons to see what each of the styles look like, then click on the appropriately shaded box). Click OK and click OK again.

You can also change the color of an object by clicking on the object and then clicking on the Fill Color icon fill icon on the drawing tool bar. Then follow the same steps as above.

Inserting text boxes

Typically presentations include text in the form of bulleted lists. However, you may want to add text someone else on the slide (separate from the bulleted list). To do this:

  1. Click on the Rectangle icon shown in the drawing tool bar. This will change your cursor to a "plus" sign.
  2. Click anywhere on your slide and, without releasing the left mouse button, drag a rectangular box about 2 inches square.
  3. Click on the Text icon, and then click on the box you just created in step 2. This will highlight the box and place a text cursor on the box.
  4. Type in the box. (Note:You may find that the text overflows the box and is generally ugly.)
    Double click on the highlighted edge of the box. This opens a Format AutoShape dialog box. Select the Text Box tab, and then check the little box saying Word wrap text in autoshape. Click OK.
  5. You can fit the text in the box either by changing the box size or by changing the font size:
    1. Changing the box size: With the box highlighted, click once on one of the tiny square boxes along the border of the box and drag it to the desired size.
    2. Changing the font size: Select the text in the box by triple-clicking any word in the text. On your toolbar above the slide, change the font size by selecting a smaller number than the one currently listed.

Copying box (or any object)

It is often easier to create a single box, get it the way we want, and then simply copy the box and replace the text for subsequent boxes. You can duplicate any object by selecting it, copying it to the clipboard, and pasting it to your slide. Here's how you go through the process with this box:

  1. Select the box by clicking somewhere on its edge. If you can see the cursor flashing in the box, the box is not selected. You need to select the box by clicking somewhere on its border.
  2. Select Copy from the Edit menu. (Hint: You can also click on the Copy icon on your toolbar or use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+C)
  3. Select Paste from the Edit menu (or click on the Paste icon or use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+V). This pastes a copy of the original box on the screen.
  4. You can then move copy of the box to any place on the slide by clicking on it and dragging it.

Creating Charts (Graphs)

[This section of these guidelines was adapted from the Intermediate PowerPoint Guidelines developed by Barbara Johnson of UMD ITSS]

  1. Create a new slide --> choose the chart slide (to add new slide go to insert --> new slide --> choose chart layout). A chart slide will appear.
  2. Click where it says "click to add title" and type in a title for your slide (example: Recreation Choices)
  3. Double click in the lower region where it says Double click to add chart --> this will open an example of a chart with its accompanying datasheet. You can edit these to create your own chart (so you do not have to set up your own graph from scratch).
  4. Notice the changes in your menu and tool bars (different from those on other slides).
  5. Move your cursor over the datasheet area --> notice that it turns into a white cross
  6. Click on the heading of column A--> when the whole column becomes highlighted, press the Delete key to clear the sample data from this column
  7. Repeat for columns B, C, and D
  8. Following the example below, enter data into the datasheet:
  9. When you have entered the data close the datasheet window.
  10. If you want to customize the graph:
  11. Make sure the graph is selected (so that is has a broad, hashed line around it)
  12. From the menu bar --> choose Chart
  13. From the chart menu --> choose Chart Type to change the type of graph from the default to pie charts or lines (or any of the other choices). You can choose "Chart Options" to make changes to how the chart displays. Example: choose Chart Type. You will see a window similar to this:
  14. Make sure the Standard Types tab is selected.
  15. Click on some of the different chart types (in the left window) to see the different subtypes associated with each (in the right window). If you want to see how your data will appear as the selected chart type, press and hold the button in the lower right labeled Press and Hold to View Sample.
  16. When you are done making your choice --> click the OK button. [Note: depending upon the data in your data sheet, some graph types will not be applicable]
  17. One possible frustration comes about when the graph type that you want to use is based on organizing the data by row (when you have it in columns) or by column (when you have it is rows). Fortunately, this organization is under your control when you define the data series. To define the data series:
  18. Make sure the graph is selected. It should have a broad, hashed line around it
  19. From the menu bar --> choose Data --> from the data menu, choose either Series in Rows or Series in Columns. (Usually, the data series starts in rows, so if your graph is not displaying as you expected, try the series in columns.)


Click on print icon or go to File menu and select print. A Print dialogue box appears, asking you to select what you want to print. Choose from:

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