Importing from a Word Outline: MS PowerPoint

Dennis Faas's picture

How many times have you been asked to give a presentation based on an existing report or other document? If you can import the document into MS Word and convert its headings to Word's default "Heading 1" style, the rest is a piece of cake.

Outlines in Word can be imported directly into PowerPoint in either of two ways:

  • From inside Word, choose File | Send To | Microsoft Office PowerPoint.
  • From inside PowerPoint, choose File | Open and in the Files of Type box, choose All Outlines.

When you import an MS Word document, Level 1 headings (formatted "Heading 1" in Word) turn into the titles of new slides. Level 2 headings turn into top-level bullet points. Level 3 headings become second-level bullet points, and so on. In essence, the outline that you see in Word's Outline view is translated into a PowerPoint outline. Any body text beneath existing headings is discarded.

Each time PowerPoint encounters a Level 1 heading in MS Word, it starts a new slide and uses the Level ! heading text for the slide's title. In other words, your presentation will include exactly one slide for each Level 1 heading in the Word document.

You can also import files saved in HTML format and turn them into a PowerPoint outline. From the drop-down Files of Type list, in the open dialog box, choose All Web Pages. During the import, PowerPoint turns each top-level heading into a new slide. All text underneath each heading is placed in a text box on the corresponding slide.

You can also insert an outline into the middle of an existing presentation. Select the slide you want the outline to follow, and then choose Insert | Slides from Outline. PowerPoint converts the outline to new slides and inserts them after the selected slide.

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