Category Archives: PowerPoint 2016 Tutorials

Useful ways to use SmartArt Graphics in your presentations

SmartArt is a diagramming tool in Powerpoint that allows you to create visual representations of information.  Your SmartArt graphics can be designed to match the look and feel of your presentations and can be used to create process flows, cycle diagrams, pryamids and orgazational charts. SmartArt is also created from the Insert tab > Illustrations Group on the Ribbon.

SmartArt graphics can be created from scratch by choosing from several different types of layouts and the one you choose will depend on what information you want to convey and in what way.  For example, the Process layout shows the steps to complete a particular task whereas the Hierarchy layout illustrates the structure of an organization such as an organizational chart.

Requirements:  PowerPoint 2013 or 2016.  To follow this tutorial, open up the Hiking Adventures Begin PowerPoint presentation and follow the directions below:

Insert a SmartArt Graphic in PowerPoint

  1. Click on slide 3 to select it and then click on the Insert tab > Illustrations Group > SmartArt button on the Ribbon. The Choose a SmartArt dialog box will appear.
    Add a SmartArt graphic in PowerPoint
  2. Click the List category
  3. Scroll down and choose Vertical Block List in the fifth row. Notice the description in the right hand pane.  Click the OK button.
    List layout in SmartArt graphic
  4. The SmartArt image will be inserted in your document and the text pane should now be visible as shown in the image below. If not, click the tab on the left side of the graphic.
    Tip!  When entering text in the SmartArt graphic, you will need to press the down arrow on your keyboard and not the ENTER key as pressing the ENTER key will add a new bullet point.
    SmartArt text pane
  5. With the first bullet in the Text Pane selected, type Bone Density and then press the down arrow on your keyboard to move to the next bullet. The text will appear in your graphic.
  6. Type Weight Bearing  then press the down arrow key again to move to the next bullet and type Strenghens Core.  Your graphic should now look like the following:
    SmartArt text pane
  7. You can also type directly in the text boxes.  Click in the second text box and type Heart. Click in the text boxes next to Heart and type Lowers risk of heart disease and Improves Blood pressure.
    Smartart Text Boxes in PowerPoint
  8.  Click in the third text box and type Weight. Click in the text boxes next to Weight and type Burns about 250+ calories/hour and Helps control weight.  Your SmartArt graphic should look like the following:
    SmartArt bullets

Converting Bullet Lists to SmartArt

You can also convert text already typed in your presentations, such as a bulleted list, into a SmartArt graphic.  Once converted, you can then style the SmartArt graphic by adding colors, fills, outlines and other effects as desired.  Depending on the SmartArt graphic layout you choose, you can also add pictures and additional text and change the layout type at any time.

  1. Click on Slide 4 to display it and then select the bulleted list or click anywhere in the list. Click the Home tab > Paragraph group and click the Convert to SmartArt Graphic button.  You can also click More to open the Choose a SmartArt Graphic dialog box.
    Convert bulleted list to a SmartArt graphic in PowerPoint
  2. Choose the Vertical Picture Accent List layout.  Your slide should look like the following.
    Convert bulleted list to a SmartArt graphic in PowerPoint

Style your SmartArt Graphic

When working with SmartArt graphics, the SmartArt Contextual tab will appear. Here you will see two new tabs, the SmartArt Design tab and the SmartArt Layout tab.

  1. Make sure your SmartArt graphic is still selected. Then, under the Design Tab, click the more button to display SmartArt styles.  Choose the 3D Polished Style.
    Styling SmartArt in PowerPoint
  2. Click the Design tab > SmartArt Styles Group and click the Change Colors button on the Ribbon 2. Select the Gradient Loop Accent 1 style.
    Styling SmartArt in PowerPoint
  3. If you have a picture SmartArt, you can click on the pictures and choose an image to go into each section.  Browse to the location where your images are located and add one picture for each bullet as shown below.  See Adding images to your PowerPoint presentations.
    Add a picture to a SmartArt graphic in PowerPoint

There are several other options that you can try out for your SmartArt diagrams.  It’s a good idea to experiment with these options to customize your presentation as needed.

How to add Online Pictures to your PowerPoint Presentations

In this tutorial, you will be creating a new PowerPoint presentation where you’ll learn how to insert online pictures from online sources such as the Bing Search Engine and OneDrive.  You’ll also learn how to resize the picture after it has been inserted.

  1.  Start PowerPoint 2016 and then create a new presentation using the Ion Boardroom Template as shown below.
    New template in PowerPoint 2016
  2. Click the Design Tab > Variants Group and select the Green Variant.
    Change variant color in PowerPoint 2016
  3. In the title placeholder type Hiking Adventures and then in the subtitle placeholder, type Half and Full Day Hikes as shown below.
    Add title and subtitle in PowerPoint 2016
  4. Click the Home Tab > Slides Group and click the New Slide arrow and choose the Two Content layout from the layout gallery.  In the title placeholder, type Come Prepared.
  5. In the left placeholder, type List of Items to Bring and then press ENTER.  Press the Tab key on your keyboard to increase the list level and type the 4 bullet item list as shown below pressing ENTER after each line.
  6. Click the Home Tab > Paragraph Group and click the Decrease List Level button and type Food and Water and then press ENTER.  Press the Tab key on your keyboard to increase the list level again and type the 4 bullet list items as shown below pressing ENTER after each line.

Two level bulleted list

Working with Online Pictures

You can search for Online Images in PowerPoint to use in your presentations.  PowerPoint uses the Bing Search Engine but you can also search for images on your Facebook, Flickr or OneDrive if you are logged into your Microsoft account.

When using the Bing Search engine, you can search for all available images, ClipArt, Photographs, Line Drawings or transparent images under the “Type” heading.  By default, PowerPoint will display all images available with the Creative Commons Only option which means that you can use these pictures under the Creative Commons License in your presentations. While most of these images are royalty free, it’s worthwhile to check the website link shown with the image to check if there any particular Creative Commons license requirements you need to abide by.

PowerPoint no longer provides the option to insert ClipArt directly into your presentations, but you can still find thousands of ClipArt images under the Online Pictures option.  Just select ClipArt under the Type menu as shown below.  Note:  If you want to search all of the Bing images, you can select the “All” option under Type.  Keep in mind that you will need to obey copyright law for all of the copyrighted images displayed.

After you insert a picture, you can resize it and position it anywhere on your slide.  Once you insert the picture, the Format Tool tab will appear.  On the Format Tool tab, you can also change the appearance and style of the picture.

Insert ClipArt in PowerPoint 2016

Insert and Resize an Online Image

  1. With slide 2 still selected, click the Online Pictures icon to display the insert pictures search window or alternatively click the Insert tab  > Online Pictures on the Ribbon.
    Insert online pictures in PowerPoint 2016
  2. In the Insert Pictures window, next to the Bing Image search box, type hiking and then press ENTER.  The search results will appear.
    Search for online images in PowerPoint
  3. Scroll the search results to to find a picture you like then click the chosen picture to select it and then click the Insert button to insert the image.  The image is inserted into the right content placeholder.Scroll online images in PowerPoint 2016
  4. With the image still selected, click the Picture ToolsFormat Contextual Tab > Size Group and in the Height box, type 2.5 and then press ENTER.  Note:  You can also resize the image using the re-sizing handles.  If you do this, hold down the Shift key to keep the image in perspective.
    Adjust image height in PowerPoint

Insert Pictures from OneDrive in PowerPoint 2016

OneDrive is Microsoft’s free cloud-based storage solution whose purpose is to provide a single place for you to store and access your files.  OneDrive is particularly useful for individuals and businesses that use PowerPoint or other Office products as you can store and access your Office files, pictures, and other files all from one central location. This allows you the ability to insert images directly from your OneDrive account into your PowerPoint presentations.

If you’re using OneDrive for storage and already have some pictures uploaded, you can insert them directly from your OneDrive Account.  You will need to be signed in to your OneDrive account insert pictures from OneDrive.  Here are instructions on how to get a OneDrive account.

  1. Add a New Slide and choose the Title with Content layout.  Click the Online Pictures icon as explained above to display the insert pictures search window or alternatively click the Insert tab  > Online Pictures on the Ribbon.  The Insert Pictures dialog box will appear. Choose OneDrive as shown in the example below.
  2. Choose Pictures and the screen where you can see your uploaded pictures will appear.  Select the picture of your choice and click Insert.

Insert a picture from OneDrive in PowerPoint 2016

Save your presentation to your computer or OneDrive account for use in the next tutorial where we will import slides from another presentation and edit and format pictures.

How to add a Video to Spice up your Presentations

Including videos into your presentations is a great way to garner the attention of your audience and get your message across clearly and effectively.  The features of PowerPoint make it easy for you to add videos to your presentations,  not only from your computer, but also from online sources such as the Cloud, your Facebook account, YouTube or from any website that provides the embedded code.

Once inserted, you can format your video in much the same way that you would format a regular graphic.  For example, you can resize the video, adjust the brightness and color contrast, add a picture frame and more.  PowerPoint even allows you to trim your videos so only a specific portion of the video will play.

Insert a Video Clip From a File

  1. Click the Home Tab > Slides Group > New Slide and Select the Content with Caption Layout
    insert slide in PowerPoint 2016
  2. Add the Title “Deer Grazing“.
  3. Click the Insert Video button in the content placeholder to open the Insert Video dialog box
    Insert a video in PowerPoint
  4. From the Insert Video dialog box, choose From a File
    Insert a video from a file in PowerPoint 2016
  5. Click the Browse button to navigate to the folder where your video resides and select the video file you want to insert and then click the insert button
  6. The video will be added to the slide and should look something like the example below.  Notice the playback and volume controls are displayed in the control panel below the video.

Video inserted in PowerPoint

Insert an Online Video

it’s possible to insert an embedded video from an online source such as YouTube or Facebook by using the Insert Tab > Media Group > Video and choosing Online Video.

Insert a video from an online website in PowerPoint 2016

In the Insert Video dialog box, choose the source of the video that you want to insert.  If you have a personal Microsoft OneDrive account, you can navigate to your OneDrive account from here.  You can also search on YouTube for videos or paste the embedded code from a website of your choice.  Keep in mind that you will need to be connected to the internet when you are giving your presentation for your online video to work.

Formatting your Video

After you insert your video, you’re ready to start formatting it.  Note:  Most of the formatting available on the Playback toolbar on the Ribbon can only be used on videos inserted from a PC on your local computer.  They will not work on embedded videos.

  1. Click on the video to select it .  Notice the selection handles appear around the video.  The Video Tools contextual toolbar will appear on the Ribbon with all your formatting options and the playback toolbar will appear below the video.
  2. To preview your video, click the Play button on the Video Toolbar or click the Play/Pause button on the Playback toolbar right below your video.

video playback toolbar in PowerPoint

Trim a Video

After previewing your video clip, you may want to remove certain parts of it.  You can trim from the beginning or the end of your video clip by adjusting the Start Time (green marker)  or End Time (red marker).

  1. Select the video frame.  The Video Tools contextual Playback tab will appear
  2. Under the Video Tools Playback tab  > Editing group, click Trim Video.  The Trim Video dialog box will appear
  3. Press Play to determine where you want to trim the video.  In our example below, we are trimming from the end
  4. Click the red marker and when you see the two headed arrow, drag to the desired ending position.  In our example, it is an end time of approximately 00:06.957. Replay the video to make sure you have trimmed your video as desired.
  5. Click OK and your video will be trimmed.

Trim a video in PowerPoint

Resize a Video

  1. Click the Format tab > Size Group
  2. Click in the Height box and type “5” or your desired width and press enter.  The video width will adjust proportionately.

Resize a video in PowerPoint

There are several other options that you can set for your videos such as fade in and fade out timings, restricting the playback to certain segments, looping a video clip and manually or automatically starting the video playback. It’s a good idea to experiment with these options to customize your presentation as needed.

  1. Click the Slide Show button on the Status Bar to display the slide with the video in Slide Show mode.
    playing a slide show in PowerPoint
  2. When you see the mouse pointer, click the mouse button to view your video.  When the video is finished, press the ESC key on your keyboard to exit the slide show.

Slide show mode in PowerPoint

Apply a Style to your Video

After you view your presentation, you may want to do some finishing touches to your video. You can apply styles and effects to your videos just the same as you can to images.  You can also change the video shape and add a border if desired.  Below we’ll add a Video style to our video.

  1. First select the video and then on the Format tab> Video Styles Group click the More button to to display the Video Styles Gallery.
    More button in PowerPoint
  2. Under the Moderate section, click Compound Frame, Black to add a subtle frame. The style will be applied to your video.

style video

Preview your slide show again and practice with the different styles such as borders, brightness and contrast and color themes as desired.

Practice: – Insert a Video in PowerPoint

Open the wildlife presentation provided for you here and download and insert the deer-movie.

  1. Following the instructions in the above tutorial, click on slide 5 and insert a new slide.
  2. Insert a title and the deer movie
  3. Trim your movie from the end to approximately 00:06.957.
  4. Resize the movie to a height of 5″.  The width should adjust accordingly.
  5. Apply a style of your choice to the video
  6. Preview your presentation and verify your movie plays as desired.

How to make the most of themes in PowerPoint

PowerPoint 2016 is loaded with features and themes that you can apply to your visuals to give your presentations clarity and make them interesting. Your goal is to gain the attention of your audience and to make sure your audience grasps what they see and hear.

The presentation theme is a set of design elements that include colors, fonts and effects that give your presentations a unique look.  Since, the advent of themes in PowerPoint, you no longer have to worry about setting a particular font size or keeping your format consistent as themes will do all that work for you.

All of the PowerPoint themes have a set of colors, fonts and effects built in.  By selecting a  specific theme, your presentation will be formatted with the predefined combination of colors, fonts, and effects of that theme.  Even the blank presentation has a theme, known as the Office theme, which comes with a white slide background and a standard set of text and accent colors.  However, there are approximately 30 built-in Office themes for PowerPoint that you can choose from.

Themes in PowerPoint 2016

PowerPoint has many built-in themes to choose from.

It’s also easy to quickly change the look and feel of a theme or template by using variants in PowerPoint.  Each theme has variations where the fonts or colors have been changed that you can apply to your presentations with just the click of the mouse.  You can also customize your presentation by applying different theme colors, fonts or effects as desired.

Another nice feature of themes is that you can apply them to your entire presentation, to only one slide in the presentation or to a whole section of the presentation.  You can also create your own theme or use colors, fonts and effects from other themes if you wish.

Apply a standard theme to the entire presentation.

  1. From the backstage view, click on New
  2. Click the Blank Presentation thumbnail
    PowerPoint Blank Presentation
  3. Click on the Design Tab > Themes Group and click on the More button to launch the Themes Gallery. Hover your mouse over the different themes to preview the changes to your slides.
  4. Click on a theme of your choice. Below we select the Wisp theme. This theme will be applied to your presentation.

Applying a design theme in PowerPoint

Change the Color Scheme of the Presentation

If you like the design of the theme but would like a different color scheme, it’s very simple to change the look and feel of your slides using Variants.

  1. Click the Design tab > Variants group and click the More button.
  2. On the Variants menu, click Colors.  You will see the available color schemes gallery appear
  3. On the Colors menu, click a color scheme of your choice.  In our example, we chose the Blue Green color scheme

Change the color scheme in PowerPoint themes

Change the font Set of the Presentation

It’s also possible to change the font set of your presentation.  There may be times when you may want a more bolder font or perhaps your company requires a specific font type.  Changing the font set or the color scheme will not change the actual theme that is applied to the presentation, just it’s look and feel.

  1. Click the Design tab > Variants Group and click the More button to view the Variants menu.  Note:  The More button will disappear once you launch the Font gallery 
  2. On the Variants menu, click Fonts
  3. On the Fonts menu, click the font set of your choice.  In our example we selected Calibri.

Changing the font set in PowerPoint

Changing Theme Effects

Lastly, there may be times when you want to use theme effects.  These affect the preset shape styles that you can apply to your shapes or SmartArt graphics in PowerPoint. These effects can also be applied from the Format tab whenever you select a shape or SmartArt graphic.

applying theme effects

Practice: – Apply a Theme in PowerPoint

Open the wildlife presentation provided for you here.

  1. Apply the Facet theme which fits the theme of the subject of the presentation.  Make sure you preview all the other themes first
  2. Select a Color variant of your choice that matches the theme
  3. Choose a Font variant of your choice.
  4. Your presentation will look something like the following:

sample powerpoint presention

How to Import Slides from a Word Outline into PowerPoint

PowerPoint allows you to use a Word outline to create new slides in a presentation.  If the Word document is formatted properly with the correct heading styles, you can simply insert the Word document into the PowerPoint presentation and PowerPoint will translate the information into slides with the appropriate titles and bullets.

You will need some experience with applying heading styles in Word before you can do this. In Word, there 9 levels of heading styles which are Heading 1 through Heading 9.   Heading styles help give your documents structure.  For example, Heading 1 is the highest outline level and is usually used for the Title of the document.  Heading 9 is the lowest and least commonly used. In PowerPoint, these heading styles translate as follows:

Heading styles in Word

In Word, heading styles are displayed on the Ribbon.  Only Heading 1 and Heading 2 styles are displayed in the Styles gallery by default.  However, after you apply a Heading 2 style, Heading 3 style will appear and so on to allow you to continue formatting your document.

Heading styles on the Ribbon in Word

Apply Heading Styles to a Word Document

In order for PowerPoint to translate your Word outline, you will need to apply your Word styles properly before you import it into PowerPoint.  To apply a Heading style, select the text and click on the Home Tab > Styles Group and click on the style you require.  In the example below, we’re applying the Heading 1 and Heading 2 styles to display single level bullets in PowerPoint.

Once you have formatted your outline the way you want it, save and close the Word file before you import it.

Apply heading styles in Word



Import an Outline from Word into PowerPoint

  1. Click on the Home tab > Slides GroupNew Slide menu
  2. Choose Slides from OutlineImport a Word Outline into PowerPoint
  3. Navigate to the folder where you have saved your Word Outline
  4. Click on the file you wish to import
  5. Click on the Insert button.  (PowerPoint converts the outline into slides)

Importing a Word outline in PowerPoint

  1. To see if your slides copied over properly, click on the slide sorter button. You should see the slides you imported from Word.  In our case, we imported 7 additional slides into our presentation.

Slide sorter view in PowerPoint