Trainers' thoughts on Microsoft Office products

A very cool addition to Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 is the ability to create sections in your presentations. This is a great way to divvy up presentations into manageable chunks. Let’s take a peek.

What Can You Do With Sections?

Sections are especially useful when you have a large presentation. You can group related slides, and collapse the sections. Reordering in your presentation gets easier. Decide the Sales Section should go before the New Products section? Drag the section to its new location. You can:

  • Put slides into logical subgroups
  • Give sections meaningful names
  • Collapse sections
  • Reorder sections by dragging
  • Apply the same transition to all slides in a section
  • Hide all the slides in a section
  • Delete a section and all the slides in it

Creating a Section

You can create sections in either the Normal or Slide Sorter view. We’ll use the Normal view.

  1. In the Slides pane, click on the slide where you want to start your section.
    OR
    Click above the slide where you want the section to start (you’ll see a flashing bar).
  2. On the Home tab, in the Slides group, click the Section drop down and select Add Section.

    OR
    Right click in the Slides pane and select Add Section in the pop-up context menu.

Any slides after the section break will be included in that section. You can always add more section breaks to further organize the slides. Since all the sections you add by default are called “Untitled Section,” it’s a good idea to give it a more meaningful name.

  1. Click on the section break and in the Section drop down, select Rename Section.
    OR
    Right click on the section break and select Rename Section.
  2. Give the section a more meaningful name and click Rename.

When a section is collapsed, the number in parentheses is the number of slides in that section. Expand or collapse a section by clicking the button next to the section name.

(Expand or collapse all sections by right clicking on any section break and choosing the option you want.)

Want to move a section? Click and drag the section break to a new location. (You cannot drag a section into the middle of another section.)

There are several other things you can do using section. Play around with them. I’m betting you’ll find them pretty useful. Best of luck!

Check out more tips in our upcoming Microsoft PowerPoint training.

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12 Responses to “Using Sections in Microsoft PowerPoint 2010”

  1. It would be great if you could generate agendas from sections!

  2. I was wondering if sections could be done manually in powerpoint 2007?

  3. The concept of sections were introduced in Office 2010 and there really is no way that you could manually create them in Office 2007. PowerPoint 07 looks as all the slides as one presentation, not as having the ability of creating sub-sections of a presentation.

  4. Is it possible to make sub sections? If so how? If not, this feature should be added.

  5. I’d like to see an option to save (or export) a single section as a separate file.

  6. It would be great to be able to name the sections as you create them instead of having to create it and THEN right click it again to give it a name since most sections will not be left as “untitled section”.

  7. Sub-sections would be useful feature.

  8. Can we automatically number slides restarting at 1 for each section, and mark the section name next to the slide number, so that the slide number shows like “SectionX-3″ etc.?

  9. I want to keep sections created collapsed after saving the file. Haven’t be able to do that. Please help. Thanks

  10. can i set preferences to have the sections always collapsed?

  11. How similar are PowerPoint sections to Word sections? I note you can now have portrait Powerpoint slides (vice usual landscape) – could a section allow you to switch from one to the other and back (as Word sections allow)?

  12. does anyone know the syntax to collapse all sections in vba powerpoint

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