Power Point Instructional Guide for Professor Epstein

Western Cultural Traditions


(1.) Introduction to Power Point

(2.) Buttons

(3.) Drawing Toolbar

(4.) Slide Control Buttons

(5.) Page Setup

(6.) Apply Design / Custom Design

(7.) Background and Color Scheme

(8.) Transitions and Animation

(9.) Inserting Pictures and Other Media

(10.) Printing Slides

(11.) Power Point Presentation

(12.) Presentation Tips

(13.) Return to Index

(14.) Artistic Movements of the 20th Century


1. Introduction to Power Point

PowerPoint is a versatile presentation tool. This software allows you as students to organize your presentation to an on-screen slide show complete with special effects.

When you begin Power Point you are immediately presented with several options.

- AutoContent Wizard [the quickest way to create a presentation]
- Template
- Blank Presentation
- Open the Existing Presentation

Once you have selected one of the above options click [OK].

You will then view the following screen.

In this screen you will be asked to choose an autolayout. Click on an autolayout of your choice. Note that the first default slide is the Title slide, however you may select any of the twelve autolayouts by double clicking on the slide or by clicking once and then clicking [OK].  It is encouraged however that you approach Power Point presentations as almost digital essays, in which all aspects of your work are of your own design.  The final blank autolayout is therefore most appropriate to your designated assignment and will allow you to avoid a genertic presentation.  

After proceeding through these introductory steps, you will be presented with the Power Point editors page which will indicate that you should be ready to create your presentation.

A floating Common Tasks Menu can be seen when you enter Power Point. The palette contains three commonly used functions.

- New Slide = When you want a new slide in the same series of slides, select the [NEW SLIDE] button.  A new slide however must be distinguished from a new presentation.  Consider the presentation itself as a document and the new slide option would be then simply an insertion into the document.  A new slide will permit you to create your own format with files, text, images, and music which you choose.
- Slide Layout = When you want to set or change the layout properties of your slides, select the [SLIDE LAYOUT] button.
- Layout Design = When you insert a template, the template will always be applied to all slides. You may change your template at any time, but once you have applied a template you will always have a template.
Click on one of the above choices and Power Point will begin the operation.

2. Buttons

The buttons on the main toolbar are for the most part very self explanitory and are comparable to any other Microsoft Office toolbar that you may have used previously.

3. Drawing Toolbar

Both Power Point and Word use the same drawing functions, which are controlled by the drawing toolbar.

This toolbar can be located automatically when you begin either Power Point or Word. However, if it is not visible for any reason, you can display it by selecting [VIEW], then [TOOLBARS], and then [DRAWING]

The toolbar can easily be repositioned to any place on the screen by clicking, holding and dragging

- The draw pull down menu contains a number of operations which can assist you with managing your drawings. These operations include: Grouping, Order, Grid, Nudge, Align or Distribute, Rotate or Flip, Edit Points, and more.
- Grouping = When developing drawings in your presentation you may find that they will consist of various entities at some point. When it comes time to move the entities you may wish to move them all at the same time. By selecting all the entities and grouping them - making all separate things one - moving or copying them can be simplified. When you need to edit just one entity of a group you may simply ungroup and edit and regroup them later.
- Order = You will often need to order or change the position of entities in relation to each other. Order is the command to utilize in case you want to position one entity on top of another, or establish the order of multiple entities in relation to forward and backward. Order contains the following options: Bring to Front, Send to Back, Bring Forward, Send Back, Bring to Front of Text, Send Behind Text.
- Nudge = If you just want to move an entity a little bit, try the nudge option. Select the entity you wish to "nudge" and then use one of the following options: Up, Down, Left, Right.
- Rotate =You can rotate or flip entities by first selecting the entity and then by selecting one of the following options: Free Rotate [To use the Free Rotate tool, select the entity you wish to rotate. Then click on Free Rotate and move the rotate cursor to one of the handles. Click and hold, then rotate the entity], Rotate Left, Rotate Right, Flip Horizontal, or Flip Vertical.
- Autoshapes = Autoshapes contains a number of shape options on a selection palette. Click on the shape you want and move your cursor to the first position of the shape. Click once to establish the starting position. Then move your cursor to the size you want the shape to be. NOTE: If you want the shape to be proportional, hold down the [SHIFT] key as you move your cursor.

- Draw Toolbar = The draw toolbar also contains buttons for drawing lines, arrow lines, rectangles or squares, and ovals or circles.  NOTE: If you want a horizontal, vertical line, a square or a circle, hold down the [SHIFT] key as you move your cursor.

- Text Box = This will create text in the form of a drawing entity.  The manipulation of that text then becomes as easy as the manipulation of other drawing entities. Click on the text box button and then select the size of your text box. Once you have created the box you can enter text. NOTE: You can resize the box by clicking on the text box and then by grabbing a handle of the box and moving it.

- Word Art = You can also create "fancy" text by using the WordArt function.  When you select the WordArt button, you will be presented with a palette of WordArt style options. Select the WordArt style you want. After you make the selection, an Edit WordArt Text box will appear. You can change the font or the size of the word or make it bold or italic. Enter your text in the Edit WordArt Text box and click [OK]. Your WordArt will be displayed on your drawing. NOTE: You can change the size or location of the WordArt by selecting a handle and resizing.

- Fill and Line Color = You can change the color of your lines, rectangles or ovals. To change the color of rectangles or ovals you will need to select the Fill Color pulldown button.  You will then be presented with the Fill Color palette. Select the color or effect you want for your object. Line color can be changed in the same way. Only you will need to select the Line Color pulldown button.  You will then be presented with the Line Color palette. Select the color you want for your line.

- Font Color = You can also change the color of your font (i.e. graphic text). Select the Font Color pulldown button.  You will then be presented with the Font Color palette. Select the color you want for your text.

- Line Style, Dash Style, Arrow Style = You can change the style for lines and arrows by using the buttons.  Each of these will cause a control/options box to appear. Change the style to your desired configuration.

- Shadow = You can add a shadow to entities by selecting the button.  When you select this button you will be presented with a shadow style options palette. Choose the shadow effect you want to add to your rectangle, oval, or AutoShape.

4. Slide Control Buttons

There are additional function buttons for Power Point which are located on the bottom left hand corner of the screen. These include . . .

Slide view = Displays the selected slide in the PowerPoint editor.

Outline View = Displays all slides in outline (text only) format.

Slide Sorter = Displays all slides and provides the opportunity to sort, re-arrange, copy, or delete slides.  You will find as the size of your "digital essay" expands that you will utilize the slide sorter more and more frequently.  It is an essential part of the process as it allows you to see simultaneously all the slides you have created.  Such a vantage point will allow you to scrutinize more clearly the ideas which you hope to project. 

Notes View = Displays a notes page. The slide is shown on top and a text box is provided for presentation or handout notes.

Slide Show = Begins the full-screen slide show with the current selected slide.

5. Page Setup

- You can control the page setup parameters of your PowerPoint presentation by selecting [File], [Page Setup]. The page window will be displayed.

- Tips: PowerPoint can be used to create cover pages for reports, etc. by setting the Page Orientation to Notes, handouts & outline Portrait or perhaps you may want your slides to be vertical by setting Slides to Portrait. This screen is also where you set PowerPoint for the specific type of presentation that you are creating (e.g. On Screen, Letter Paper, A4 Paper, 35mm Slides, Overheads, etc.).

6. Apply Design / Custom Design

PowerPoint comes equipped with a number of designs or background "templates." These pre-designed templates can assist you with creating your presentations. When you select the design you will find that this presents the student with more than just a background. In fact, the design will control many different features of the slides. This includes the background image, the text size, the text location, the text color, and more.

- However, for your purpose as students, you will find that such an option is detrimental to your objective.  All aspects of your project should be custom designed, unique, and prevalent to your concept only.  Once again, you should be conscious of diverging from the generic Power Point Presentation.

7. Background and Color Scheme

After you have selected a Template, you can control the "background" for that template by selecting [FORMAT], and then [BACKGROUND].

- You can easily set or change the background color by clicking on the pulldown color menu. You can also set the background for a "fill pattern."
You can apply the background to all slides using the [APPLY TO ALL] button, or select the [APPLY] button to apply the background to just the current slide.
You can also control the "color scheme" for that template by selecting [FORMAT] and [SLIDE COLOR SCHEME]. The slide color scheme window will be displayed.

You can control the color scheme (Shadows, Background, Text & Lines, Title Text, Fills, and Accent) for your slides from this window. Click on the Custom tag if you want to control each of the scheme elements individually. Once in the Custom menu double click on the colored element "box" and a palette will be displayed. Click on the new color for that scheme element. You can apply the color scheme to all slides [APPLY TO ALL] or you can [APPLY] the scheme to just the current slide.
Custom Color Scheme is a integral part of the presentation.  You will discover as you continue to work with images, that they absolutely depend upon your own ability to adjust and coordinate colors.  The colors within the image should be subtly highlighted by the background color and text.  You do not want to detract from the image itself.

8. Transitions and Animation

You can create special effects with Power Point on screen presentations through the use of the tools [SLIDE SHOW] and [SLIDE TRANSITION].

You can set the transition effect by clicking on the Effect pull down menu and selecting any of the available effects. You can also set the speed of the transition (Slow, Medium, or Fast). The transition can also be regulated as Manual (Mouse Click) or Automatic after a specified number of seconds.

You can also view the transition which you have selected. The picture in the Slide Transition window will go through the transition you selected. If you want to see it again, click on the picture. You can add a transition sound by clicking on the Sound pulldown menu and selecting one of the options. You can apply the transition to all slides [APPLY TO ALL] or you can [APPLY] the transition to just the current slide.

Preset Animation: Preset animation provides a number of "quick pick" animation effects. You will need to first select the image or entity that you wish to animate. Then just pick the Preset Animation effect you wish to use from the pulldown menu.

Custom Animation: Custom animation provides an extensive number of animation variations.

- Select the [Timings] tag. When Timings is selected, you will see the various slide elements labeled in the lower-left frame (e.g. Title 1, Text 2, Object 3). To animate the element (text, image, etc.) click ONCE on the element name. When it is highlighted, click on the [Effects] tab.
- After selecting an Effect from the pulldown menu... You can select sounds, control the text color intensity and other effects after the animation process takes place. This is useful for creating the effect commonly called "progressive disclosure" (previous line of text is dimmed when next line of text is the focus point. You can also introduce text in various ways. For example using the "Introduce Text" settings you can animate text so that it appears all at once, by word, or by letter.
- Do not let animations dominate the content/information. Some animations are difficult to track with the eye when viewing a presentation.
- Always test your animations before your final presentation. The speed of the machine you are working on will dictate the speed of the animation. If you are using a "fast" machine to create the slides and setting the animations, and then use a slower machine for presentation...the animation effects may not be what you had expected.

9. Inserting Picturs, and Other Media

- If you have a picture which you want to insert into your PowerPoint project, use the following simple procedure.  Select [INSERT] from the pull-down menu, Select [PICTURE], and Select [FROM FILE].  Then select your picture file from the folder. You may modify the size of your picture or the location. Modify the size by selecting the picture and then grabbing a "handle/grip" and dragging it.  Move the picture (when grips are on) by clicking and hold the mouse button...then reposition the picture.
- Inserting other Media: You can also insert Movies, Tables, Graphs, and Objects (sound files etc.) from the [INSERT] pull-down.

10. Printing Slides

- When you are ready to make hardcopies of your presentation, you will need to select [FILE] and then [PRINT].
- Unless you are using a color printer, select Black and White to save on toner.  To print certain pages, select [SLIDES] and enter the beginning and ending page numbers.

11. Power Point Presentation

The following attached Power Point is merely a simple example of a presentation that I created for a professor.  It does not use the full range of possibilities that this program offers, but is only a rudimentary example of completed project.

12. Presentation Tips

- Are you reading your slides to the students?   This question can help you judge whether your slides actually add to your presentation content. The purpose of projecting a visual is to show the class your points. If you merely repeat aloud what they can readily see and read, students have little incentive to pay attention to you. Either redesign the slide so it contributes to your content or leave it out.  Recognizing that presentations can often be rather boring for students can help you to distill your presentation in order to project a concise, cohesive, and clear presentation.

- Can your slides be read from a distance?  It is often tempting to throw every bit of minutiae on a slide. As a result, text gets smaller and may look like an eye chart to those sitting further away. Avoid this by using large type and keeping the information on each slide to a minimum. If the details are that important,put them in a handout.  (Handouts should never be print outs of your slide show.)

- Rethinking how you use technology is difficult. But for students, the results are worth it. After all, it requires more time and research to add technology to presentations, but what good is the added effort if your planning does not properly put that technology to use? In the end, the students focal point should not be the slideshow, the projector, or the room, it should be you.

- Effective communication with poise, eye contact, and mild hand gestures is highly important.  However be conscious of expressing speaking anxiety through habits that may be distracting or detrimental to a presentation.  Even though gestures such as touching your face may be typical in day to day conversation, they are often more pronounced when caused by anxiety.  If the audience detects a definitive sense of nervousness, it is not unusal for them to question your credibility.  The traditional rules of presenting tell you to keep your hands down (away from your face, hair, pockets) and your feet on the floor (avoid swaying and rocking back and forth).  The more you are aware of your negative nonverbal communication habits, the more easily you can break them and channel that nervous energy into a more effective presentation. Return to the top of the page.

13. Return to Index

14. Artistic Movements of the 20th Century