Using Multimedia in Powerpoint Presentations

Suzanne Mullett

The radio uses a combination of sounds and speech. Newspapers use a combination of text and images. Television combines all these elements with the aim of enhancing communication and understanding. This combination of visual and audio media for the purpose of communicating is referred to as multimedia.

Studies have shown that multimedia presentations, using Microsoft PowerPoint for example, are an effective tool for encouraging retention of information. Educators often make use of presentations to teach students new concepts. In the business environment, presentations are often used as a sales tool. However, it is essential that multimedia technology is used appropriately to ensure successful outcomes. Let us consider some of the ways of using multimedia in a PowerPoint presentation.

Adding Movies and Sound

Advanced level training will cover options for playing sounds and movies during a PowerPoint presentation. Possibilities include playing sounds and movies continuously throughout the slide show, across several sequential slides and only when clicking on a sound or movie image.

Clip Art

The term clip art refers to pictures or images that can be imported into a document, such as a PowerPoint presentation. Graphics can be used more effectively to deliver a particular message than text alone.

Clip art is available in two different file formats: bitmap or vector graphics. Bitmap file formats describe images, such as scanned photographs, that are made up of a grid of multicoloured or black and white pixels. These images are limited in quality by their resolution. Vector file formats describe an image as a series of points, lines, curves and polygons using geometric modelling. A crisp image is generated which is usually superior in resolution when compared to bitmap graphics. By understanding the difference between file formats, clip art users can select the appropriate image file to achieve the desired result.

When using clip art, it is important to be aware of copyright and usage rights so that an image is used in a legal way. Clip art can be added to a PowerPoint presentation in a number of ways. By receiving advanced level training, the user can learn to use the software in the most effective way.

Using animations

In the context of Microsoft PowerPoint, animations refer to the movement of text boxes, bullet points or images onto a slide during a slide show. When used sparingly in PowerPoint presentations, animations can effectively add emphasis to a particular point. Users of PowerPoint can choose between using Preset Animation Schemes or Custom Animations. Advanced level PowerPoint training will teach users how to use animation schemes to maximum effect.

Using scanned images

When using scanned images in PowerPoint presentations, it is important to remember that the greater the image size, the longer it takes to load and display the image. Advanced level training will cover procedures for selecting the appropriate resolution for a scanned image and appropriate file formats.

Incorporating multimedia technology appropriately into presentations has been shown to achieve beneficial outcomes. By attending PowerPoint advanced courses, it is possible for the user to learn how to maximise the multimedia capabilities of the software.

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About the Author:

Suzanne Mullet is a freelance copywriter. For more information on powerpoint/advanced/course, please visit

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