Tips to Leverage Slide Master View in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows

Brand integrity is a critical element of presentation management.  PowerPoint’s Slide Masters will promote your brand, with the right logo and graphics, and colors–consistently through everyone’s presentations in your company.  Plus, Slide Masters make it easier for all users in your company to create polished, professional presentations.  To help you get started, here are some tips on how to use and update Slide Masters in PowerPoint.

Slide Master view is an important view within PowerPoint 2016. Why? That’s because, if you make changes or edits to this view, the modifications will influence all slides within your presentation.

For example:

  • If you want to make your company logo appear on all the slides, you will have to add the logo to the Slide Master.
  • If you want the font size of your slide titles to be a little larger or smaller, then those edits also need to be made in the Slide Master.

Having said that, this page is not a tutorial on how you can make changes in the Slide Master but just a brief overview of how you can access the Slide Master view. You can see the Slide Master interface in Figure 1, below. We explain how you can bring up Slide Master view, later on, this page.

Slide Master view in PowerPoint 2016
Figure 1: Slide Master view in PowerPoint 2016

Figure 1 above shows how a typical Slide Master looks like. Here are some guidelines on working in this view:

  • First, look at the pane on the left, and you will find one large slide thumbnail and several smaller slide thumbnails below.
  • The larger slide thumbnail represents the Slide Master, and changes made to the Slide Master influence all the Slide Layouts contained within that particular Slide Master.
  • The smaller slide thumbnails represent individual Slide Layouts. These are the same layouts that you see in the Layout gallery. To learn more, see Changing Slide Layouts in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows. Any change you make to these individual Slide layouts influences only the slides based on that particular layout.
  • The active slide in Figure 1 is the Slide Master itself. The two most important placeholders here are the Title and the Text placeholders; these represent the title and body text in your slides respectively.

Access Slide Master View

To access the Slide Master view, you can choose either of these options:

  1. Shift+click the Normal view button on the Status Bar (highlighted in red within Figure 1, shown earlier on this page).
  2. Access the View tab of the Ribbon, and click on the Slide Master button (highlighted in red within Figure 2).

    Slide Master button
    Figure 2: Slide Master button

Once you are in Slide Master view, you can edit the actual Slide Master(s) and its Slide Layouts. In subsequent tutorials, we explore options available within the Slide Master:

  1. Change Background Styles in the Slide Master
  2. Slide Layouts within Slide Master View
  3. Change Background Styles for Slide Layouts
  4. Custom Backgrounds for Slide Master and Layouts
  5. Duplicate, Rename, and Edit Slide Layouts
  6. Add New Slide Layouts
  7. Inserting New Placeholders in Slide Layouts
  8. Formatting Picture Placeholders
  9. Create Custom Shaped Picture Placeholders
  10. Add Your Logo or Graphic to the Slide Master
  11. Add and Rename Slide Masters
  12. Duplicate Slide Masters

To go back to Normal view from Slide Master view, choose any of these options:

  1. Access the Slide Master tab of the Ribbon. Within the Close group, click the Close Master View button (highlighted in blue within Figure 1, shown earlier on this page).
  2. Access the View tab of the Ribbon, locate the Presentation Views group, and click the Normal button (highlighted in blue within Figure 2, shown earlier on this page).
  3. You can also click the Normal button located on the Status Bar (highlighted in red within Figure 1, shown earlier on this page).

About the Author

Geetesh BajajGeetesh Bajaj is an internationally acclaimed PowerPoint, storyboarding, info-diagramming and presenting expert who has been awarded the Microsoft PowerPoint MVP (Most Valuable Professional) every single year for 16 years now. As an MVP, Geetesh interacts and collaborates with the Microsoft PowerPoint product development team.

He is also on the Board of Directors for the Presentation Guild, a presentation industry trade association, based out of Cincinnati, USA.

Based out of Hyderabad, India, he believes that any presentation is a sum of its elements—these include abstract elements like story, concept, color, interactivity, and navigation—and also slide elements like shapes, graphics, charts, text, sound, video, and animation. Geetesh has authored six books.

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