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Although the Normal view is probably the most common one used, there are other views that come in handy for different tasks and preferences.

Display Normal view

This is the default view.

  • Select View > Normal.

    Or, select Normal Normal View button in PowerPoint from the task bar at the bottom of the window.

Display Outline View

Use this view to see a text outline or story board of your presentation.

  • Select View > Outline View.

Display Slide Sorter view

Use this view to see the order of your slides, or to reorganize your slides.

  1. Select View > Slide Sorter.

    Or, select Slide Sorter Shows the Slide View button in PowerPoint from the task bar at the bottom of the window.

  2. To reorganize your slides, just click and drag your slides to a new location.

Display Notes Page view

Use this view to see how printed notes look, or as cues for yourself while you're presenting.

  • Select View > Notes Page

    Or, select Notes notes button in PowerPoint at the bottom of the slide window.

Display Reading View

Use this view to resize the window while viewing animations and transitions.

  1. Select View > Reading View.

  2. To close Reading View, press Esc or select another view in the task bar at the bottom of the window.

Display Master Views

To change the Slide Master:

  1. Select View > Slide Master.

    Note: Be careful when making changes to the Slide Master, since changes to layouts in the Slide Master will be applied to all slides in your presentation that use that layout.

  2. To close a master view, select Close Master View.

Change the color of the view

  1. Select the View tab.

    Select Normal, Outline, or Slide Sorter view if you're not already in one of these views.

  2. Select Color, Grayscale, or Black and White to see how your presentation looks on the screen or printed.

Add a Ruler, Gridlines, or Guides

  1. Select the View tab.

  2. Select the options you want:

    • Ruler - to show horizontal and vertical rulers.

    • Gridlines - to show a grid.

    • Guides - to show automatic alignment guides.

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Choose the right view for the task in PowerPoint

Most of the time you'll be working in what PowerPoint calls Normal view.

That is, a pane of slides displayed vertical along the left-hand side, and the currently selected slide displayed large on the right.

This is what we're looking at now, and it's the primary way to use PowerPoint.

If I need a different view of these thumbnails, I can hover my mouse over the line separating the two, and drag it to the right to make the thumbnails larger, or drag it to the left to make the thumbnails smaller.

But sometimes we need something different.

Let's go to the View ribbon tab to see what our options are.

There's five main presentation views.

The first is Normal, and that's what we're working in, but you can also click on Outline View.

This is a text-only way of looking at your slides.

I'll be showing you how to use Outline View later.

You can also change to the Slide Sorter View.

This is a great way to get an overview of what your slides look like.

You can use the zoom slider on the bottom right-hand side of the status bar to make your thumbnails larger.

This is also a great view for swapping slides around.

There's the Notes Page, which you can see speaker notes about each slide if you've used them, and finally, Reading View.

This is a great way to review a presentation in a nice full-screen view.

To change out of Reading View, you can click on a different view on the status bar at the bottom of your screen.

I'll click the Normal View icon which brings me back where I was.

In this case, it brought me back to Outline View.

In addition to the presentation views, there's also the Master Views.

The Master Views are where you can go to make universal changes to every slide in your presentation.

I can click Close Master View to get out of this view, and back to the last mode that I was in, which is Outline View.

I'll select the View ribbon tab again, and this time I'll change my view to Normal.

There's a few more things I want to show you that we can change from the View ribbon tab.

The first one is what color our slides are going to appear as.

By default, they're in color right now, but I can also click Grayscale to see my slides in Grayscale view.

This is a great way to preview how they're going to look if I want to print them out in grayscale to save ink.

I'll click Back to Color View, I'll change back to the View ribbon tab, and the last thing we can decide is whether or not we want the ruler to appear, and I can add that by placing a checkbox next to Ruler.

We can add Gridlines, and finally, we can use Guides.

Guides are four crosshair points that appear in the center of your slide.

All of these things can work together to help you align objects as precisely as possible on your slide.

You can turn off any of these settings, or even just turn them on temporarily if you're having trouble aligning an object.

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