Different Ways to View Slides in PowerPoint 2007 and 2003

Use different views to design, organize, outline, and present your slideshow

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Microsoft Corporation

No matter what your topic, a PowerPoint 2007 or 2003 presentation helps you communicate your ideas to an audience. PowerPoint slides provide a convenient way to present graphical information that supports you as a speaker and adds additional content to your presentation. 

Many people spend all their time in the Normal view when working on their PowerPoint presentations. However, there are other available views that you may find useful as you put together and then present your slideshow. In addition to Normal View (also known as Slide View), you'll find Outline View, Slide Sorter View, and Notes View.

Screen captures in this article show the different views in PowerPoint 2003. However, PowerPoint 2007 has these same four different slide views, although the screen may look slightly different.


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Normal View or Slide View

View the large version of the slide

 Wendy Russell

Normal View or Slide View, as it is often called, is the view you see when you start the program. It is the view that most people use most of the time in PowerPoint. Working on a large version of a slide is helpful when you are designing your presentation

Normal View displays thumbnails on the left, a large screen where you enter your text and images, and an area at the bottom where you can type presenter notes. 

To return to Normal view at any time, click the View menu and select Normal.

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Outline View

Outline view shows only the text on the PowerPoint slides

Wendy Russell

In the Outline view, your presentation is displayed in outline form. The outline is made up of the titles and main text from each slide. The graphics are not shown, although there may be a small notation that they exist.

You can work and print in either formatted text or plain text. 

Outline view makes it easy to rearrange your points and move slides to different positions 

Outline view is useful for editing purposes, and it can be exported as a Word document to use as a summary handout.

In PowerPoint 2003, click View and select Toolbars > Outlining to open the Outlining toolbar. In PowerPoint 2007, click the View tab. The four slide views are represented by side-by-side icons. You can easily toggle between them to compare views. 

PowerPoint 2007 has a fifth view — the Reading view. It is used by people who are reviewing a PowerPoint presentation without a presenter. It displays the presentation in full-screen mode.

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Slide Sorter View

Miniature versions or Thumbnails of slides show in Slide Sorter View

Wendy Russell

Slide Sorter View shows a miniature version of all the slides in the presentation in horizontal rows. These miniature versions of the slides are called thumbnails.

You can use this view to delete or rearrange your slides by clicking and dragging them to new positions. Effects such as transitions and sounds can be added to several slides at the same time in Slide Sorter view. You can also add sections to organize your slides. If you are collaborating with colleagues on a presentation, you can assign each collaborator a section.

Locate the Slide Sorter View using the View menu in either version of PowerPoint. 

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Notes View

Add speaker notes to printouts of slides in PowerPoint

Wendy Russell

When you create a presentation, you can add speaker notes that you refer to later while delivering the slideshow to your audience. Those notes are visible to you on your monitor, but they aren't visible to the audience.

Notes View shows a small version of a slide with an area below for speaker notes. Each slide is displayed on its own notes page. The speaker can print these pages out to use as a reference while making a presentation or to hand out to audience members. The notes do not show on the screen during the presentation.

Locate the Notes View using the View menu in PowerPoint.