Skip to content

Powerpoint - beyond slides

Printed support materials that make your presentations better

PowerPoint support materials come to the rescue of both the presenter and the attendees. PowerPoint has greatly advanced from being just a tool to prepare slides and organize it. It has come up with various support materials like handouts, notes which can be created and printed to enhance the level and quality of the presentation.

In this article we’ll summarize the printed (aka dead-tree) options in PowerPoint, upcoming articles will go into each one in detail.


Handouts are documents given freely to the audience. It can refer to topics discussed during a presentation. It generally contains the key concepts and additional information about the presentation which maybe useful for future reference. Handouts are usually given before the presentation so that the audience are prepared for understanding the topics discussed.

Powerpoint handout image from Powerpoint - beyond slides at

In theory, this avoids the need for taking notes during the presentation so that the attendees can simply listen to the talk.


Notes are like handouts but its objective is to support the speaker. It is termed as Speaker notes in PowerPoint 2003 and Notes pages in PowerPoint 2007. These notes contain important reference points which will help the presenter to recall concepts while making the presentation.

Powerpoint notes image from Powerpoint - beyond slides at

Notes are added to the presentation slides and can be printed as well. This saves the time of jotting down the points and also these notes are printed along with a small picture of the slide so that it is easy for the speakers to relate the notes with the slides while making the presentation.

Speakers Notes / Notes are displayed in the Powerpoint presenter view.


PowerPoint also offers many options to print the slides itself which can be either used by the speaker or the attendees for reference.

PowerPoint slides image from Powerpoint - beyond slides at

Slides can be printed in colour, black and white or grayscale. Slides can be printed in different paper sizes like A4, Letter, Legal, etc.

Outline View

Another way to view and print slides in PowerPoint is the Outline view. This view shows only the text of the slides especially useful when it is required to edit just the text of the slides.

PowerPoint outline image from Powerpoint - beyond slides at

Printed documents of the presentation in outline view serves as table of contents of all the topics covered in the presentation. Also it gives an overview of the entire presentation. Each title appears along with a slide icon and slide number. The text appears under the slide title.

About this author