Important Points on Creating Visual Media in Microsoft PowerPoint


  • Use lighter backgrounds and dark text for longer presentations. White text against a dark background can cause eyesore before long, so use these in short presentations.

  • Using all CAPS is never desirable in presentations, documents, or any other visual media, except for posters, shorter titles, and to draw attention to words.

  • Decide on one method to emphasize the text. Having text that is within "quotes", and/or italicized, and/or bolded, and or ALL IN CAPS can be difficult to read. The emphasis gets lost when too many methods are used. If your text has the same meaning with or without emphasis, don't add any emphasis at all.

  • For large amounts of text, use fonts that are easy to read, like Times New Roman, Garamond, or Palatino, which you'll commonly see in paperback books, or Arial. Beware that a lower-case L and an upper-case I in Arial font look the same. Serif fonts are sometimes considered best. They contain the *tittles* and *jots*. Sans-Serif means without serifs, such as Arial and MS Sans Serif.

Times New Roman 13 pt

Arial 12 pt

  • Warnings and Cautions, when used in a professional environment such as a production manual, or training manual or presentation, and especially when referring to the physical safety of personnel and/or equipment, should always be marked in the same manner and include a graphic for each warning or caution. Clipart for these types of items are available from Clips Online. The best colors for these types of graphics are red and/or orange for warning, yellow and/or orange for caution.

  • Don't write sentences in your presentation unless you do not have a Presenter. Use short phrases. The presenter or instructor can expand on the comments or thoughts without seeming repetitive.