How to Add and Format Slides in PowerPoint

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  • 0:03 Adding Slides
  • 0:27 New Slide and Layout
  • 3:52 Duplicating & Deleting Slides
  • 4:35 Hiding a Slide
  • 6:46 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Karen Sorensen

Karen has a Bachelors in Communications. She has 25 years of experience in Information Systems, Adult Learning and Virtual Training.

PowerPoint makes adding new slides easy - a couple clicks and you are all set. This lesson will explain how to add new slides, select a slide layout, duplicate and delete slides and hide slides during your presentation.

Adding Slides

If you plan to use PowerPoint on a regular basis, you need to know the different options to adding, deleting, duplicating and formatting your slides. And this doesn't mean you need to read a stack of books. This lesson will look at the different ways to add a slide, how to select a slide layout, and then we'll finish by learning how to delete, duplicate and hide a slide.

New Slide and Layout

As with most software programs, there are usually several ways to perform a task. The same is true for PowerPoint. There are three common ways to add a slide:

  1. Going to the Insert menu and clicking on the new slide command.
  2. You can go to the Home Menu and click on the new slide command.
  3. In the slides panel, to the left of your slide, right-click and choose New Slide from the menu.

This lesson will demonstrate using the most common option, which is adding from the Insert menu.

When you select the more icon, or upside-down triangle, at the bottom of the New Slide command, you have several choices for the layout. A layout is a pre-designed template that contains the formatting, positioning and placeholders for the content. This includes text, images, videos, tables and charts. Many people prefer a blank slide, including myself. However, as you are getting to know PowerPoint, these pre-designed layouts are handy and help you to learn how to use the program. Think of them like training wheels for PowerPoint.

Let me give you an example. Start with a new blank presentation. The first slide will always be created for you, and the layout is for the title slide. Looking at the title slide, you will see two placeholders for text. Placeholders are boxes with a dotted line that create a border around the content, and all content on your slides will have a placeholder.

Let's go back to our title slide. Inside the placeholders, PowerPoint tells you what content to add, such as the title and the subtitle. Simply click in the box and add your text. But what about the rest of our slides? We wouldn't want to use the title slide layout for every slide in our presentation, so we need different options.

Go to the ribbon and click on the Insert menu. The New Slide command will be on the far left. Click on the more icon to expand the layouts. And there are several choices, including Title and Content, Title Only, Picture with Caption, and my favorite, a Blank slide. In our example, we will use the Title and Content layout, which is the most common choice.

To add a title, click inside the placeholder and begin typing. For our example, the title will be 'A Ride Through Yosemite National Park.' In the text box below the title, we can add more text and likely a couple bullet points about Yosemite. But before we do that, I want to draw your attention to the middle of the slide. Notice the six icons? These are shortcuts to adding charts, pictures, SmartArt, videos and tables. You will find these short-cut icons in most of your layouts.

Let's go ahead and add another slide. Click on Insert and expand the layout choices for a new slide. This time, select Picture with Caption. This is an easy way to add a title, text and a picture. Notice that the layout includes a place for our picture, including a shortcut icon to add it. It also has a spot for the title and an area to add a description or caption.

Duplicating and Deleting Slides

As with adding a new slide, there a several ways to duplicate and delete slides. We are going to learn what I consider to be the easiest way. On the left side of the screen in PowerPoint is the slides pane. This shows small pictures, or thumbnails, of each slide in your presentation. If you right-click on any slide, you will see an options menu with several commands (and notice the New Slide command). Among the options are Duplicate Slide and Delete Slide.

To duplicate or delete, the steps are the same. Right-click on the slide to remove or copy and choose Duplicate Slide or Delete Slide. It's that easy!

Hiding a Slide

So, let's move on to hiding a slide. I have to admit, when I first realized that PowerPoint had a Hide Slide command, I thought someone had a bit too much caffeine when developing the application. Why would you create a slide just to hide it?

Over the years, I have found two occasions where it actually comes in very handy.

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