What is SmartArt?

Use SmartArt to quickly and easily make a visual representations of your information. You can choose from among many different layouts including: Lists, Processes. Cycles, Hierarchy and many more. Use their visual design to efficiently communicate your message or ideas. SmartArt graphics can be created in Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Word. They are generally faster and better looking than text-boxes and their design can be modified between a wide array of designs with the click of a button. So you can see your information in the different styles with ease.

How to Create a SmartArt Graphic

In the Insert tab of the ribbon, there is a SmartArt button: Illustrative image

Once this has been clicked you will be asked to choose a style or a design of SmartArt from: Illustrative image

  • Lists
  • Processes
  • Cycles
  • Hierarchies
  • Relationships
  • Matrix
  • Pyramids
  • Pictures
  • or More from

For the purposes of demonstration, we will use a 'list' style SmartArt as this is the closest approximation to a text-box and therefore is the most generally the most widely used. Select 'list' from the left-hand pane and then a 'design' on the right-hand pane:  Illustrative image

Once a design has been selected you will see the blank SmartArt on your slide: Illustrative image

How to add text to your SmartArt

In order to add content to the SmartArt graphic you have two options:

  1. Click into one of the panels of the SmartArt and begin typing: Illustrative image
  2. Click into the 'text-pane' and begin typing: Illustrative image

Adding extra levels/bullets to your SmartArt

SmartArt is great for adding content quickly as you can generate extra bullet points for your SmartArt by pressing the Return key when clicked into the Text-pane area

This works on the same principle as bullet points in Word, when you press Enter/Return on the last bullet point in a list it will generate a new panel/bullet below:  Illustrative image

It's also possible to indent the bullet-points in the text-pane panel by pressing the 'Tab' key on the bullet-point you wish to indent one level, this will make the bullet-point a sub-point of the bullet-point above: Illustrative image

you can also right-click on a bulletpoint to "Demote or Promote" it instead of using the Tab key

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