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PowerPoint Pearls: Resizing and Moving Text Boxes

I often see new users moving a textbox instead of resizing it, or visa versa. This is an easy mistake to make since the steps are essentially the same. The trick is to know where to place your cursor and to know how it will appear when you’re in the right spot.

Here are the steps:

To resize a textbox

  1. Select the textbox by clicking on the text. The box will highlight with crosshatches and handles appear as illustrated:


  2. Use the corner handles to constrain the proportions of the box. Use the top and bottom or side handles to change those dimensions. The cursor will change to a double-headed arrow when you select the handle. Left click and drag the mouse to resize the box. Release the mouse button when the textbox is the desired size.

To move a textbox

  1. Select the textbox by clicking on the text. The box will highlight with crosshatches and handles will appear.

  2. Move the cursor to any area along the crosshatches. When the cursor turns into a quad arrow (), left click and the textbox can be dragged into location. Release the mouse button when the textbox is in the desired location.

For MAC users the only difference is that the cursor turns into an open hand that closes with a left mouse click to move the box.

One last word of advice: Don’t overcrowd the slide. You must maintain margins of at least ½ inch (the default) or some of your screen elements may be cut off when you present.


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