How to Add Notes to PowerPoint Presentations for Enhanced Communication

how to add notes to powerpoint


Microsoft PowerPoint is a powerful tool for creating and delivering presentations. It’s not only about the slides; it’s also essential to provide additional context and reminders for the presenter to ensure a smooth and effective presentation. Adding notes to your PowerPoint slides is a simple yet often underutilised feature that can significantly enhance your communication during a presentation. In this article, we will guide you through the process of adding notes to PowerPoint presentations to help you engage your audience more effectively.

The Importance of Adding Notes

Adding notes to your PowerPoint presentation offers several benefits, including:

1. Enhanced Communication: Notes allow you to include crucial information that might not be apparent from the slides alone, providing a more comprehensive understanding of your topic.

2. Presenter’s Aid: Notes act as reminders and cues for the presenter, helping them stay on track, remember key points, and manage their time effectively.

3. Reference Material: Notes become a valuable reference material for both the presenter and the audience after the presentation, providing more depth to the content.

4. Collaboration: Collaborating with others on a presentation becomes more accessible when you can share and edit notes. This can be especially useful in team or group projects.

Now, let’s explore how to add and use notes effectively in PowerPoint.

Adding Notes in PowerPoint

1. Open your PowerPoint presentation: Launch PowerPoint and open the presentation to which you want to add notes.

2. Switch to the Normal View: Click on the “View” tab and select “Normal.” This view provides a convenient layout with your slide on the left and a notes section on the right.

3. Adding Notes: In the notes section, you can start typing your notes for each slide. Simply click in the notes area and start typing. You can include additional details, explanations, talking points, or any other information you want to convey alongside the slide.

4. Formatting Notes: You can format the text within the notes section, just like you would in a regular Word document. You can use formatting options such as bold, italics, bullet points, and more to make your notes clear and organised.

5. Save Your Presentation: Remember to save your presentation to keep the notes you’ve added. It’s a good practice to save your work frequently to prevent any data loss.

Using Notes During Your Presentation

Once you’ve added your notes, here’s how you can use them effectively during your presentation

1. Presenter View: To see your notes while presenting, go to the “Slide Show” tab and select “From Beginning.” Your presentation will start in presenter view, which shows the current slide to the audience and the presenter’s view, including your notes, on your screen.

2. Keyboard Shortcuts: During the presentation, you can use keyboard shortcuts to navigate through your notes. Press the “N” key to toggle between displaying your notes and hiding them, allowing you to glance at your notes when needed.

3. Highlight Key Points: Use your notes to highlight key points and reminders. You can even include cues to engage with your audience or questions to ask them.

4. Stay on Track: Your notes serve as a roadmap to keep you on track. You can follow the flow of your presentation and ensure you don’t miss any critical points.

5. Keep It Concise: While notes are essential, make sure they are concise and to the point. You don’t want to be reading lengthy paragraphs during your presentation, as this can disengage your audience.

Sharing Presentations with Notes

If you want to share your presentation with colleagues or peers, including the notes, follow these steps

1. Save as a PDF: Go to “File” and select “Save As.” Choose the PDF format and save your presentation as a PDF file.

2. Include Notes Pages: In the “Save As PDF” dialog box, check the option to include “Notes Pages.” This will save your presentation as a PDF with the slide on one side and your notes on the other.

3. Share the PDF: You can now share the PDF file with your colleagues or audience. They will have access to both the slides and the accompanying notes.


What is the best way to take notes on PowerPoint?

Under Slides, select Notes Pages. You can pick how many slides you’d like to appear on a single page, and there will be additional space where you can write your own notes. Most people use the 3 Slide option; however, if you tend to write a lot of notes, the 2 Slide option would be ideal.

Should I use PowerPoint notes?

As a presenter, you can build a deeper connection with the audience if you don’t read out from your slides and maintain a healthy pace while delivering your live presentation – and Speaker Notes in PowerPoint help you do just that.


Adding notes to your PowerPoint presentations is a simple yet effective way to enhance your communication and presentation skills. Notes provide additional context, reminders, and cues for the presenter, making the presentation more engaging and informative. Moreover, they can be a valuable reference for both the presenter and the audience, ensuring that the message is well-understood and remembered. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can make the most of this feature and deliver more impactful presentations.

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