Student Presentations in PowerPoint

This workflow will work for anyone using PowerPoint 365. For advice on how to use PowerPoint 2019 please see ‘Recording presentations in PowerPoint’.

As a student at UWE, you are automatically given access to a free version of Office 365, which includes PowerPoint. If you have not yet installed Office 365, you can find the information about how to do this on the Office 365 software pages, under the section for ‘Microsoft Office Desktop Applications’.

The main benefit of recording in PowerPoint is that each slide is an independent recording, which allows you to correct any mistakes immediately and makes editing easier. It is possible to record your presentation, your voice and your webcam, which makes it suitable as a back-up workflow for recording individual student presentations.

If you are recording for an assessment, please read the assessment brief carefully, as it specifies what is required in your assessment submission; you must ensure that all the elements are covered.

Which version of PowerPoint do I have?

If you have decided you need to record your presentation in PowerPoint, and your PowerPoint version does not match these instructions, please check which version of PowerPoint you have. To do this, open PowerPoint, and while it opens, look at the launch screen.

Screenshot of launch screen which says Office 365 under the title PowerPoint

If your recording needs to include a webcam, you will need to be using either PowerPoint 365 or 2019 (for instructions, see the link at the start of this article). If you are a member of staff, PowerPoint 2019 is available from the Software Centre.

Instructions for other versions of PowerPoint can be found on the Microsoft Help Pages.

How do I record?

[If you prefer to watch a short video, ‘Record a slide show with narration and timings’ contains a two-minute video made by Microsoft.]

Open your PowerPoint presentation, go to the ‘Slide Show’ tab and click on ‘Record Slide Show’.

Screenshot of Slide Show tab

This opens up the recording screen, which has all the settings you will need to record. The items marked in yellow relate to various recording options, and the items marked in red are items related to the actual presentation of the slides.

Screenshot of PowerPoint narration screen

1 – This is where you start and stop the recording.

2 – The ‘Clear’ option is where you can delete the recording, either from a single slide or the whole presentation. The ‘Settings’ option allows you to select your microphone and your camera – if you are using one.

3 – This area allows you to decide if you would like to record voice only or include a webcam.

4 – It is possible to see any notes you may have made when creating the presentation, and you can change the font size of the text.

5 – These are the inking tools for any annotations you may want to do during the presentation.

NB: Every time you change slide or activate an animation, there is a pause in the recording, so allow yourself a couple of seconds’ break when changing slides in order for all the narration to be recorded.

And finally, if you decide to use the webcam, it is possible to move the picture insert to another part of the slide and adjust the size.

Exporting the narrated presentation to a .mp4 file

There are a number of ways you can make your presentation available to others; however if you are recording for assessment purposes, you need to pay close attention to your assessment brief.

Export the presentation as a .mp4 file

To create a .mp4 file, navigate to the ‘Export’ (1) option in the file tab, select ‘Create a Video’ (2) and check that the settings above the ‘Create Video’ (3) button are what you would like them to be.

Screenshot of Export option

Please be aware that the process of creating a video can take a while, and so can uploading the file to Blackboard, so give yourself plenty of time to do this before the deadline.


Photo by Roberto Nickson from Pexels