How to Add Animation Effects in Microsoft PowerPoint

by Jenny Hansen

Adding animation effects to your PowerPoint 2013 slides can help keep your audience engaged. Entrance effects like building your bullet points one at a time can help punctuate your verbal presentation, or you can enhance your graphics by fading one chart away and having another snap into place. Be aware, however, that too many special effects will tire your audience, so use moderation.

Animation Basics

To apply animation effects to text or graphic objects, select the object to animate and click the "Animations" tab. This tab includes some basic choices like Appear, Fade and Fly In. Animation effects are also available via the "Add Animations" button. Note that animations are different than transition effects, which control how slides enter and exit the screen. Transition effects can be easily added in the Slide Sorter view by clicking on the Transitions tab.

Animation Options

The Animation group provides, four types of animations available in the "More" drop-down: Entrance, Exit, Emphasis and Motion Paths. Entrance and Exit effects control how an object enters or leaves the slide, respectively. Emphasis controls the behavior of the object; for example, does it spin, grow or shrink? Motion Paths move an object, perhaps in a circle, up and down a line. Many people find the Emphasis and Motion Paths effects distracting. In PowerPoint, particularly with Animation effects, remember that "less is more."

The Animation Pane

One you have animated your slides, you can change the slide timing or re-order the way animated elements appear by clicking the "Animation Pane" button which allows you to re-order animated objects by dragging and dropping. A right-click on any element shows options like "Remove animation" or "Effect Options."

About the Author

Jenny Hansen has trained on technology for 20 years, working at Fortune 500 companies such as Xerox, Nestle Foods and Capital Group. She is a technical writer and member of the Microsoft Insiders User Group and does social media and blogging for a variety of industries.

Photo Credits

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