Choosing a PowerPoint Slide Layout in Office 2011 for Mac - dummies

Choosing a PowerPoint Slide Layout in Office 2011 for Mac

By Geetesh Bajaj, James Gordon

If you’re using PowerPoint in Office 2011 for Mac, you’ll find that each time you add a new slide to your presentation, it’ll have a PowerPoint slide layout consisting of placeholder boxes. The Blank layout has no placeholders. You can choose a slide layout when inserting a new slide.

On the Ribbon, click the Home tab. In the Slides group, click the small arrow to the right of the New Slide button to display the slide layout gallery. To switch to a different layout, click the Ribbon’s Home tab, and then in the Slides group, click Layout to display the Layout gallery.


You can change the layout of any slide by selecting it and then clicking a different layout from the gallery. There are two basic kinds of placeholders:

  • Text placeholder: Similar to a regular text box, text placeholders have text in them and can be formatted just like text boxes. Unlike regular text boxes, most text placeholders have bullets and numbering turned on by default so you type in an outline.

  • Content placeholder: You can recognize a content placeholder because it has six buttons in it that you click to insert an object such as a table or picture. A content placeholder does double duty. If you click into a content placeholder and then start typing, the buttons disappear and it turns into a text placeholder.

All placeholders on a new slide start in a single layer. When you add text or content to a placeholder, each content item or text placeholder box becomes its own layer.


When you insert an object that’s larger than your content placeholder, you may activate a floating toolbar that lets you choose how you want to handle the excess size:

  • Manual: You manually resize and crop the inserted object.

  • Crop: Turns on the crop tool so you can decide what to chop off.

  • Resize: Scales the object to fit the placeholder.