Adding exercises into PowerPoint

For those of you who are trainers, you are probably used to the idea of adding questions and exercises into your training material, probably through the use of specialised training software such as Adobe Connect or Articulate Storyline. You can however, add exercises into PowerPoint directly, without the use of additional software.  This allows you to use PowerPoint to check the attentiveness of the trainee (and therefore the success of the training) or simply to add additional interactivity to your presentation.

You can find a sample presentation with a couple of pre-made questions here.

Multiple choice questions

Setting up the pages

Once you’ve written your training content / presentation, you will need to add extra pages for questions.  Each question will need to be on a separate page and from a pedagogical standpoint, you can either put the question directly after the point you want the trainee to learn, or at the end, as you prefer.

Add your new page and write the question you wish to ask the trainee, along with the incorrect and correct responses:


As you can see in the picture above.  I’ve added the question text “What colour are my eyes” and the correct and incorrect responses “Blue”, “Brown”, “Green”, “Hazel”, “Black”, “Purple”, “Silver”, and “Turquoise”.  I’ve then added pictures and illustrations to make the page look more interesting.

Then we need to add the feedback pages.  You will need at least two, though you can have one for each individual response if you prefer.  As an example, I have created two, one for the correct response and one for the incorrect response.  In my example, I’ve used a traffic light graphic with a red light for incorrect and a green light for correct.  You can change this as you wish, perhaps add a green / red background or simply add text.  Whatever works for your presentation layout and theme!  Personalise the feedback to make it more interesting.  I prefer to give the trainee pointers towards the correct answer in the incorrect feedback, so that the trainee learns from their mistakes!

feedback pages

Adding the hyperlinks

Once your three (or more) pages are set up, it is time to start adding the interactivity.

  • Click on one of the text fields you have used for your incorrect responses.  Ensure you have selected the field and not the text!
  • Then click on Insert > Hyperlink.  Choose “Place in this document” and choose the slide corresponding to the incorrect feedback slide.  You should be able to see a screenshot of the slide to help you.incorrect hyperlink
  • Then press the OK button
  • Repeat the process for each of the incorrect responses, linking them to the incorrect feedback slide(s)
  • In my slide, I’ve also put shapes behind the text to better illustrate the question, so I’ve also hyperlinked the shapes in exactly the same way as the text fields.
  • Then repeat the process for the correct feedback, linking the correct response to the correct feedback page.  Note that for this to work (unless you want to add vba coding), you can only have one correct answer!

feedback pages

Remove the normal transitions

For the question to work effectively, we need to prevent the slide from moving onwards when the mouse button is clicked and / or remove any navigation buttons from the slide master and put them only the pages that do not contain questions and / or feedback.

To remove the transitions:

  • On the ribbon click on the transitions tab.  Then in the section labelled Advance slide, remove any of the ticks from the two check boxes.transitions

To remove navigation buttons from the slide master:

  • Click on View > Slide master. slide master
  • Navigate to the appropriate slides which contain the navigation buttons.  Select the forward and backward buttons and copy them before deleting them.
  • Then go back to the normal view by clicking on the “close master view” button on the slide master tab.
  • Paste the buttons onto the pages that don’t contain questions and feedback

Note: If the last page in your presentation is a feedback page, you will need to put the transition back in place for this slide only; otherwise you will not be able to end your presentation as normal!

And that is it!  You can of course add vba to add scoring if you wish, and / or change the question so that you can choose more than one response before checking the answer.  Illustrate the questions how you wish; there is no limit!Slide4

A sample presentation with a couple of pre-made questions can be found here.  Enjoy!  I will probably post some other question types that can be made in PowerPoint, so let me know if you like the idea!

Alesandra Blakeston

One thought on “Adding exercises into PowerPoint

  1. Hello there, You have done a great job. I’ll certainly digg it and personally suggest to my friends. I’m sure they’ll be benefited from this site.

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