Shapes may look basic or even primitive, but they are the building blocks of almost anything you create
on your PowerPoint slides. Fortunately, you are not deprived of choices because PowerPoint provides plenty of
shapes, neatly categorized into
nine types. Among all the shape
types, Action Buttons behave differently -- these are essentially rectangular shapes that
are used as navigation aids to navigate between slides, or even another presentation, document, or a web
URL. You insert an Action Button in almost the same way as you insert any other shape:
Launch PowerPoint 2013. Most of the time
PowerPoint will open with a new slide in a presentation that you may use in this tutorial. Alternatively,
you can open any existing presentation and navigate to the slide where you want to add an Action button.
Select the Insert or Home tab of the
Ribbon, and then click the
Shapes button to access the Shapes drop-down gallery that you can see in
Figure 1: Action Buttons category within the Shapes drop-down gallery
Within the Shapes drop-down gallery, the bottommost category is called
Action Buttons (highlighted in red within
Figure 1, above) in which you will find 12 variants of Action Buttons that serve different,
default purposes. While some Action Buttons sport icons that remind you of VCR style Play,
Rewind, or Forward buttons, others include iconography for concepts such
as Home, Sound, Help, Information, etc.
Click to select the Action Button of your choice, as shown in Figure 1 above. This
will change the cursor to a cross hair as shown in Figure 2.
Figure 2: Cursor changes to a cross hair to indicate shape insertion mode
Place this cursor on your slide where you want to insert
the selected Action Button (refer to Figure 2 above). Now, either click once on the slide to place the Action Button, or click
and drag on the slide to create an instance of the Action Button in the size you desire. As soon as the Action
Button is placed on the slide, the Action Settings dialog box pops up, as shown in
Figure 3: Action Settings dialog box appears when an Action Button is inserted on the slide
Within the Action Settings dialog box, you can change the
default behavior of
the inserted Action Button. For now, just close the dialog box by clicking the OK button.
Notice the new Action Button on your slide, as shown in Figure 4.
Figure 4: Action button inserted
Since an Action Button is essentially a shape, you can change its appearance by using techniques explained within
the PowerPoint Shapes and the
Fills, Lines, and Effects sections on this site.
Save your presentation.
Action Buttons in
PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
Action Buttons in PowerPoint 2010
PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences:
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