Google Slides – Creating lists & line spacing

One popular aspect of presentations is to have a list of key points. In Slides you have the choice of adding bulleted or numbered lists and also the option of choosing the style of the points (as you do in Docs). Here we’ll look how you create these lists and how you can edit them.

  • Lists
    • Bulleted lists
    • Numbered lists
    • Customizing your bullets
    • Adjusting the line spacing

Creating a bulleted list

In Google Slides, create a text box (see my last post). This is where you’re going to put your bulleted list.

Click on the Bulleted list icon on the toolbar.


This will add a default bullet point in the text box. To add more points just press Enter after each line of text.


To change the style of the points, click on the little triangle to the right of the Bulleted list icon. This offers you 5 other formats.


Here is what those formats look like with text added.

Note, to add an indented point, just press the tab key, e.g. the line Extensively & intensively.






Creating a numbered list

This is similar to the above, but this time click on the Numbered list icon on the toolbar.


You can also convert a bulleted list into a numbered one, just by selecting the text box that contains your bulleted list and clicking on the numbered list.

As with the bulleted list, if you click on the little triangle next to the icon, you are offered 5 other formats.


Here are the formats with some text added.







Customizing the bullets

To select further bullet types, go to the “Format” menu > Lists > List options

Here you have some boxes with some more formats, click on one to change your list.


Here I’ve clicked on the “tick”.


Alternatively, you can use the special characters to choose the specific point type you want. Click on “More bullets”.


This opens the “Insert special characters” menu. By default, it opens in the Arrows list.


Click on an icon to change your list.



Adding a space in between your points

There are two ways to do this. Either you press enter to create the next point.


Then press delete, to remove the bullet point. You need to do this for each one.


Alternatively and a quicker way is to adjust the line spacing. Click on the “Line Spacing” icon on the toolbar.


By default, depending on the theme you’re using, it’s set a 1.15, which means the next line is 1 line below with a little bit of space between them. To increase the space, click on “Double” to add a complete line height between each point.


As you can see, it’s now spaced out and all the points were done at the same time.


eBooks available on Drive, Forms, Sheets, Docs, Slides, and Sheet Functions:

Baz Roberts (Google+Flipboard / Twitter)

Google Slides – Working with text

In this post, I’m going to focus on working with text in your slides. If you’re already familiar with Google Docs, a lot of the editing controls here are the same, but don’t worry if you’re not, I’m going to take you step-by-step through what’s available.

We’re going to look at:

  • Text boxes – inserting, changing the size and position, rotating
  • Text editing – font, size, bold, italics, underline, colour
  • Text alignment – horizontal & vertical

Text boxes

One key difference from adding text in Slides to writing in Docs, is that in Slides you need to create a text box to tell it where you want the text to go. This has the benefit of allowing you to put text wherever you want with ease.

In my previous post we saw how you can add a theme and a layout, where the text boxes were already created. To edit them we just had to click on them. Let’s suppose that we want something different, let’s create our own one.

Inserting a text box

Here I’ve created a new Slide document and by default the first slide already has a couple of text boxes. So, first I’m going to delete them. Click on the border of the text box, so that the border goes from grey to blue. Then press delete. So now we have a blank slide.


Click on the “Text box” icon on the toolbar.


Then click and drag on the slide, so that you make a rectangle. When you let go of the mouse button, you’ll see the cursor is in the text box ready to write some text.


I type some text in.


Editing the text

Now we want to edit the text. There are two things to remember, you can either edit the whole text box and all the text in that box in one go, or you can edit specific words. More often than not, you’ll want to edit the whole box.

To edit the whole box, you need to click on the blue border, like we did to delete the text boxes earlier. When you hover over the border you’ll see the cursor change to 4 arrows. Click on the border.

Changing the font size

Now let’s change the font size. Click on the triangle next to the font size and select the size you want.


As you can see, it’s change the font size for all the words in the box.


Editing specific words

If we want to just edit specific words, double-click on the word to highlight it.


Changing text to Bold

Then click on the edit option you want. E.g. let’s make “text” bold. Click on the “B” on the toolbar.


This changes just that word.


Changing the font

Now let’s change the font. Click on the text box border, then click on “Arial” on the toolbar.


This opens the font list. Select one of the fonts on the list. Here I’ve selected Comic Sans.


Slides doesn’t just have the fonts on the list, it has hundreds of fonts available which you select and add to your list. At the bottom of the same menu, click on “More fonts”.


This brings up the Fonts dialogue.


To help you, there is the option to choose a category (Display, Handwriting, Monospace, Serif, Sans Serif), which displays just the fonts in the category.

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You can also sort them in various ways (popularity, alphabetical, date added, trending).

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Or if you know the name, you can type it in the search box. Here I’m going to add “Helvetica Neue”. Often you don’t need to type the whole name, because as you type it’s searching for fonts matching with what you’ve typed so far. Click the font name and then “OK” to add it.

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The font will then appear in the font list.

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Now, I select my text and add the new font.


Adding italics and underlining

Similar to adding Bold, you can add italics and underline words or complete phrases.

Italic: The word ‘italic’ to the left is in italics, it’s slightly slanted to one side. To add it, select your text and click the “I” icon on the toolbar. Alternatively, you can select the text and press Ctrl+I.

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Here I’ve selected the text box.


Underline: The word ‘underline’ to the left is underlined, it has a line under the word. To add it, select your text and click the “U” icon on the toolbar. Alternatively, you can select the text and press Ctrl+U.

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Here I’ve selected the last word.


Changing the font colour

So far, we just have black text, but let’s add some colour to it. Select your text, click on the font colour icon and select a colour.


If you are using a theme, you also have specific colours selected for that theme, which are really useful as more often than not, they match the colours in your slides really well.


Although there are lots of colours to choose from, you also have the option to make your own one. Click on the font colour icon and click on “Custom”.


The box to the left controls the colour and the rectangle to the right, controls the brightness. You can click on the box and move the circle around to change the colour. On the right, move the slider up or down to control the brightness. I would start with changing the brightness as normally it starts off with black, so you need to lighten the black to be able to see the colours.

You will see the current colour in the box at the top. Click “OK” once you’ve found the one you want.

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Aligning your text

Here I’ve made the text box bigger, just so we can see the effect of the following alignment options.


We can control the horizontal and vertical alignment.

Click on the “align” button on the toolbar.


The top row controls the horizontal alignment and the bottom row the vertical alignment.

Horizontal alignment

We have 4 choices, left, centre, right, and justified.







Justified: Here I’ll use a paragraph of text to show you the difference from Left.


Vertical alignment

We have 3 choices: top, center, and bottom.







Changing the text box position

Let’s move the text box to somewhere else on the page. This is a simple case of clicking on the box and dragging it to the position and let go of the mouse button. It’s usually best to click away from the text as Slides might think you want to edit the text.

Notice, as you move it around your slide, you will occasionally see red lines. These are there to help you align the box with other elements on the page. They are really, really useful. For example, let’s put the put in the centre of the page. I move it until I see a horizontal red line in the middle of the page and a vertical one in the middle.

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Rotating the text box

Finally, text boxes can also be rotated, which is particularly useful for title slides.

Click on the little blue circle just above the text box and drag it either to the left or right. You’ll see a ghost image of the text box showing you it rotating and you’ll also see the degrees of rotation, if you want to be exact.

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Once it’s rotated where you want it, let go of the mouse button.


eBooks available on Drive, Forms, Sheets, Docs, Slides, and Sheet Functions:

Baz Roberts (Google+Flipboard / Twitter)

Google Slides – Setting up your slides

Before we jump into the details of making your slides, you’ll probably want to set up the overall look of the slides. We can change the size of them, the layout of the text and images, and as we saw in the previous post, we can add a theme to our slides which can give it a distinct look.

To do this we’ll look at:

  • Page setup
  • Themes
  • Slide layouts
  • Duplicate slide
  • Reordering slides
  • Background

Before we start, let’s just clarify what each of the above settings do.

Page setup – This controls the size of all the pages (slides)

Themes – Controls the look of all the slides – this affects the background, the layout, colour, and text

Layout – This controls the positioning of the text and images on the slide. Each slide can have a different layout. E.g. the first slide may just have a title, whereas, the following ones have bullet points and images.

Background – This controls the slide background. Think of it as controls what the slide paper looks like before you add text, etc. The most common things to do is to change the colour of the background or to add an image like wallpaper on that slide. Different slides can have different backgrounds.

Page setup

You can change the size of the page (slide) by going to page setup. Click on the “File” menu and selecting “Page setup”.


There are different presets or you can set the size exactly the way you want it.

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I must admit, I rarely change the default setting, but it’s good to know it’s possible and may be necessary for your situation.


In my previous post, we saw how we can radically change the look of our slides by selecting a theme for our slides,  which we can either be selected from the Theme sidebar or from the “Theme” button on the toolbar.


There are 18 to choose from, plus as we’ll see in a moment, there’s the option to import one. One thing I don’t like about the Theme toolbar, is that it only shows you the title slide format and not the content slides. One way to do this is to add a new slide.

Add a new slide, by clicking on the plus button in the toolbar. Now you have a title slide and content slide.


After you’ve clicked on a theme on the sidebar, click on a slide in the Slide Sorter on the left-hand side of the screen. Here you can quickly navigate between the slides, and in this case, see what the theme looks like for both the title and the content slides.


This is the title slide format:


This is the content slide format:


Slide layout

Once you have a theme, it’s now time to determine the layout of your slides. Above I’ve referred to title and content slides, which is oversimplifying what you can actually do. Presentations will vary from a simple title slide followed by a few slides with your content, to longer, more complex ones where you have a title, some content in various layouts, and maybe some section titles.

Fortunately, it’s very easy to change the format of your slides and you can make each slide of different format if you really want.

Let’s create a presentation with some of the different layouts available. I’ve already changed the title and subtitle of the slide 1 to “Giving a great presentation” and “3 top tips”.

I’m going to start with slide 2. Right-click on slide 2 in the Slides sorter then select “Apply layout” to open the layout options.


Alternatively you can access the same layout options from the Layout button on the toolbar.

The titles of each layout a fairly self-explanatory and come with a preview of each one.


Let’s make slide 2 a section header. Click on “Section header”.


Click in the text box to change the text. Here I’ll add “Tip 1”.


Next I need another slide, so I click on the plus button in the toolbar. Notice it copies the layout of the previous slide.


As above, right-click on slide 3 in the Slides sorter then select “Apply layout” to open the layout options. This time let’s select “Main point”.


Click in the text box to change the text. Here I’ll add “Raise the energy level!”. For now I won’t add an image.


Notice that the text box isn’t wide enough to fit the statement, so I need to make it a bit wider. Click on the text box, and you’ll see the blue border of the text box, which has some little squares on it. Click and drag the square on the right-hand side in the middle, to make the text box wider.



I want to add another section header. Now, I could add a new slide and change the layout as before, but it would be easier to copy the previous one I made for Tip 1 (slide 2).

Right-click on slide 2 and select “Duplicate slide”.


Now click and drag that slide down so it’s at the bottom of the Slides sorter.

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Now, click on the text and change it to what you want, e.g. here I want it to be “Tip 2”.

I do the same duplicating for the tip 3 and for the main points. So, I end up with 3 tips.



Finally, I want to add a final slide but this time with a different layout. All I do is add a slide using the plus button, then right-click on it to open the layout options. here I’m going to leave the audience with something to think about, so I want an image with a quote at the bottom, so I select the “Caption” layout.


Here I’ll add an image (see my previous post) and add a quote in the caption at the bottom. I’ll also move that caption to the centre, so it looks a bit better.



On that last slide, I want to change the background colour. To do so, right-click on the white part of the slide (i.e. the background), then select “Change background”. This will open the background options.

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Click on “Colour” and you have a palette to choose from. Notice that as we’re using a theme, there is a special palette with colours that go well with that theme. I’m going to choose the yellow (that’ll wake the audience up!).

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As you see, it’s changed the background colour to yellow.


You can also use an image as your background, which can be good for including logos or just an image related to your presentation topic. Right-click on the slide, select “Change background” then next to Image “Choose”.


This takes you to the Insert background image dialogue box, where you can look for images in different places. I’ll cover this in more detail in a future post.


The image I want is on my Google Drive, so I go to Google Drive, then as I know it was recently uploaded, I go to “Recent”. I click on the image and press “Select”, then “Done”.


As you can see, I now have a beautiful river as my background.


eBooks available on Drive, Forms, Sheets, Docs, Slides, and Sheet Functions:

Baz Roberts (Google+Flipboard / Twitter)

Google Slides – Making a quick presentation

In the last post, we had a quick look at the overall layout and the menus. Now, let’s jump right in and make our first presentation. This will touch on various aspects of Slides so you’ll be able to see how they combine to make a presentation.

We’re going to:

  1. Create a blank Slides document
  2. Give the document a name
  3. Pick a theme
  4. Add a title to the first slide
  5. Add another slide
  6. Add some bullet points
  7. Change the font size
  8. Add an image using the Research tool
  9. Present the slides

Creating a blank Slides document

In Google Drive, click on the New button and select Google Slides.


Renaming your document

By default, the document is called “Untitled presentation”.


Click on the filename to select all the name, then type in the filename your want, e.g. “First presentation”.


Picking a theme

When you first create a Slides document, the Themes sidebar appears on the right-hand side.


This allows you to pick one of 18 different themes, which is useful for quickly changing the look of your slides, without having to create the look yourself. Here I’m going to pick the blue ‘Materials’ one. Just click on the theme.

This will change the look of your slide on the main page.


Click the cross to close the Themes sidebar.


Adding a title

As you can see, by default it’s giving me the option of adding a title and sub-title. To edit the title, just click on it and type in your title.


Plus, I’m going to add a sub-title. Click in the sub-title box and type your sub-title.


Add a new slide

Great now we have our introduction slide. Next we need to add some extra slides to add content to our presentation.

Click on the + symbol on the toolbar.


Alternatively, you can press Ctrl+M (Cmd+M on Mac) or you can go to the “Slide” menu and select “New slide”.


As you can see, it’s added a second slide and as we are using a theme, it’s also automatically changed the look of the slide from a title slide to a content slide.


Adding a title to your slide

Click in the “click to add title” box and type your title in.


Adding bullet points to your slide

Now in the box below I want to add some bullet points. So, I click on the “click to add text” box.



From the toolbar, I click on “bulleted list”.


The first bullet point will appear in the text box.


I write the points, pressing “Enter” every time I want to add a new point.


Changing the font size of the text

This theme’s font size is 18, which is a bit small. So I’m going to increase the size. Select the bullet points.


On the toolbar, click on the triangle next to font size, to open the menu. From the menu, I’m going to select 30.


Alternatively, you could click on the font size number and type a new size in.

As you can see, the font is much bigger, and I think much better now.


Adding an image

Text only presentations are a little boring and I definitely recommend adding images into your slides where you can, and even replacing the text with them, as an image can be far more memorable to your audience and ensures they are listening to you, rather than reading the next points on the slide.

So, let’s add a little image next to the points. Slides has a wonderful tool, which allows you to search images on Google without leaving Slides itself. Click on “Tools”, then “Research”.


This opens the Research tool, which allows you to search for different things on Google. We’re looking for images, so click on “Images”.


Then type in a search term, e.g. presentations.


Lots of images will appear below and you can scroll down to see more. I like the red man presenting, so to add it to my slide, I just click and drag it onto the slide.

Note, this doesn’t always position it exactly where you want it when you drop it on. So, you may need to move it again (clicking & dragging) to the exact position you want.


To close the Research sidebar, click on the cross.

Presenting your slides

When you’re ready to present your slides (or if you just want to check that there’s nothing wrong in the presentation), click on the “Present” button at the top of the screen.


This will enter into presentation mode, and the menus, etc will disappear.


To navigate to the next slide, click the left button on the mouse and press the right arrow key on the keyboard.



As you can see, it’s really easy to make professional looking presentations!

Here’s the whole process:

Slides-Making a presentation15

eBooks available on Drive, Forms, Sheets, Docs, Slides, and Sheet Functions:

Baz Roberts (Google+Flipboard / Twitter)

Google Slides – The basics

This is the first of a new set of posts, this time looking at Google’s presentation tool, Google Slides. It takes its cue from the classic Microsoft presentation software, Powerpoint, but as with the other Google Apps, it’s far more streamlined and contains the most common and essential tools to be able to produce great presentations and visual documents.

Here I’ll give you an overview of the software, in particular, the layout, the menus, and the toolbar.

First, let’s create a new Slides document.

In Google Drive, click on the red “New” button, then select Google Slides.


This will open a blank Slides document.


Finding your way around Google Slides

It’s pretty easy to find your way around Google Slides as the page isn’t cluttered with many different things. At the top you have the menus and below that the toolbar. Most of the things you want to do are accessed via the menus or the toolbar.

On the left-hand side, you have the slides sorter, which is where you can see all your different slides and can reorder them. In a new Slides document there’s only one slide, but this can easily be added to. In the centre, is the current slide.

On the right-hand side is the sidebar, which is only visible for certain options, usually where extra options to be shown, for example, here it offers different ‘themes’, which are different colours and formats for you slides.

At the bottom you have the option of adding some notes as a speaker (or presenter). The audience won’t see these.

Finally, in the top-right corner you have some options like the present mode, sharing and commenting, plus your account options can be accessed from here.


What’s in the menus?

File – Options relating to the file as a whole.


Edit – Options to edit the text.


View – Options mainly relating to how you view the slides.


Insert – This allows you to add different types of things in your slides.


Slide – This contains options to add slides, change the way they look across all the slides, plus it has some navigation tools.


Format – As nothing has been selected, these are greyed out, but these allow you to edit the text, shapes, and images you have.


Arrange – The objects on the slide can be arranged in different ways. They can be controlled vertically and horizontally, but also each slide has layers, so you can change which objects are on top of each other. It also allows you to group items.


Tools – This contains a few useful tools, such as, the spellchecker, and the ‘research’ tool, which allows you to search the Net right from within Slides.


Table – Similar to the tables in Google Docs, this allows you to add and edit tables in your slides.


Help – Finally, there is a comprehensive help menu.


What’s on the toolbar?

The most common functions are on the toolbar. Let’s briefly go through them.


Plus: Add a slide or add a slide with a different layout; Print; Undo; Redo; Paint format


Zoom to fit; Zoom


Select; Text box; Insert image; Insert shape; Lines & connectors


Comments; Background options; Layouts; Theme options; Transitions between slides


At the top with have 4 extra options. Present the slides; Comments (& notifications); Share; Account options (including Sign Out)


In future posts, we’ll look at all these areas in more details.

The toolbar also changes depending on what is selected on the slide, which is really handy as it brings up the options relevant to what you need at that moment.

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Baz Roberts (Flipboard / Twitter / Google+)