In last weeks DigiKnow blog, we looked at design and best practice when using PowerPoint. We covered the 5/5/5 rule for text and the 3/3/3 rule for font, colour and layout options.

This week, we will demonstrate how to add in different types of media content and ensure it is accessible through PowerPoint’s Accessibility Checker.

Before we get to how to insert different types of media, first ask yourself why you decided to use media (image / video, etc.).

It might be that a photograph conveys an idea much quicker than a 1,000 words. A relevant video already exists which saves you time. It reduces the amount of text required, thus simplifying the text.

The use of visuals certainly livens up a presentation but please ensure the wider audience can also benefit from this.

As this has quite a lot of information, a video format was chosen for the blog. This video has subtitles.

Video to demonstrate how to insert different media types and the use of the Accessibility Checker

In the video, we have covered quite a number of things. Inserting and amending images, videos, tables, charts/graphs and smart art.

It might be that only one or two of these items may be used in most PowerPoint presentations, however, it’s good to know how to insert media items and ensure these meet the accessibility standard.

Also, when inserting YouTube or embed code, when delivering the presentation, it’s necessary to have an Internet connection for those items to work.

Needless to say, there’s several ways of inserting content. We would like to emphasize inserting via the icons in the content holder as this layout uses a template, therefore, has accessibility built in.

If you need text and media on the same image, choose a slide layout with two content holders.

When you go off-road (off template as it were), this leads to using floating objects (i.e., text boxes and media items float on the Drawing Layer, these were mentioned in a MS Word – Floating Objects / Text Boxes blog, the same rule applies here).

To finish off this blog post, here’s a few PointPoint tips to help improve your practice.

Good practice
  • Use simple and consistent design and layout (16:9 format)
  • Use the 5/5/5 rule to simplify text/bullet points
  • When presenting, elaborate on the bullet point topics, don’t read off the screen
  • Use contrasting colours for text and background
  • Limit colours used to three
  • Use good quality and relevant images or other media
  • 1 or 2 slides per minute is sufficient
Things to avoid
  • Writing in CAPS (hard to read)
  • Flashy transitions and overuse of animation (distracting)
  • Image distortion
  • Clip Art (may look unprofessional)
  • Adding in sound

Above all, keep it simple.

There is much more to PowerPoints and slide presentations, too much to mention. However, we will cover other useful features and best practices in future posts.

Next week

DigiKnow uses PowerPoint in a Pecha Kucha style. Whilst this breaks some rules from this weeks and last weeks blog posts, as a method of presentation, its succinct, has impact and is great for student presentations. More on this next week.


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