PowerPoint Basics

Opening PowerPoint
Understanding the screen
Inserting slides

Adding and editing content

Inserting text
Inserting notes, headers and footers
Formatting text and lists

Working with design

Customizing background
Applying and creating templates
Design tips

Working with graphics

Downloading, inserting and editing images
Image Resources for Health & Life Sciences
Drawing and editing objects

Working with animation

Animating text and images
Slide transitions

Adding sound and video

Sounds, narration and music
Video requirements

Graphs and tables

Working with graphs
Importing and linking data from Excel to PowerPoint

PowerPoint online

Hyperlinks and action buttons
Putting up a presentation on the web

Printing and Presenting

Printing options
Running a slide show


PowerPoint DO's and DON'T's
Other PowerPoint websites
Workshop evaluation
(for on-site workshop participants only)

Working with Graphs

  • You can insert a graph by selecting Insert Menu < Chart. A new window opens showing a dummy spreadsheet, a graph based on that dummy data, and chart menu and toolbar options become activated.

  • Experiment with the data sheet by clicking on a cell and typing your own data, to understand the effect of the data changes on the chart.

  • After you've finished entering data, exit the work window by clicking anywhere outside the chart or the data sheet. The data sheet will disappear.

    If you need to make any revisions to the chart, double-click the chart and the data sheet will appear again.

  • PowerPoint defaults to bar graph. You can select another type of chart through the Chart menu < Chart Type.

    Note: the Chart and Data menus are active only when the chart is selected and the data sheet window is open. Double-click on the chart to open the data sheet and activate the chart menu.

  • You can change the chart options, such as titles, axes, gridlines, etc., by selecting Chart menu < Chart Options.

  • You can also change the chart area colors and fill effects by clicking on the outer or inner chart area respectively:

  • If you click in the middle of a bar/column/line, a little square handle will appear to let you know that you have selected a data series:

  • Right click on the square handle or select Format < Selected Data Series to change colors or to calculate error bars.

  • You may also choose to represent some data series as bars and others as lines on the same chart. Right click on the square handle or select Chart < Chart Options:

Always remember that you need to select the appropriate graph component in order for the respective command to be active. For example, if the graph area is selected, the command for error bars will not be visible. You may not be able to select the right thing at first. Frustrating though this may be, have patience and keep trying. Eventually you will get a handle on it.
Need help? Email me! varvarak@mail.med.upenn.edu