Every PowerPoint presentation is composed of a series of Slides. To begin creating a slide show, you’ll need to know the basics of working with Slides. You’ll need to feel comfortable with tasks such as inserting a new slide, changing the layout of a slide, arranging existing Slides, changing the slide view, and adding notes to a slide.

Optional: Download our practice presentation.

Watch the video below to learn more about slide basics in powerpoint.

Understanding Slides and slide layouts

When you insert a new slide, it will usually have placeholders to show you where content will be placed. Slides have different layouts for placeholders, depending on the type of information you want to include. Whenever you create a new slide, you’ll need to choose a slide layout that fits your content.

Slide Basics

Placeholders can contain different types of content, including text, images, and videos. Many placeholders have thumbnail icons you can click to add specific types of content. In the example below, the slide has placeholders for the title and content.

Slide Basics

To insert a new slide:

Whenever you start a new presentation, it will contain one slide with the Title Slide layout. You can insert as many Slides as you need from a variety of layouts.

  1. From the Home tab, click the bottom half of the New Slide command.
    Slide Basics
  2. Choose the desired slide layout from the menu that appears.
    Slide Basics
  3. The new slide will appear. Click any placeholder and begin typing to add text. You can also click an icon to add other types of content, such as a picture or a chart.
    Slide Basics

To change the layout of an existing slide, click the Layout command, then choose the desired layout.

Slide Basics

To quickly add a slide that uses the same layout as the selected slide, click the top half of the New Slide command.

Slide Basics
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