Resize Text Boxes Accurately on a Slide in PowerPoint 2013
Learn how to resize text boxes accurately on a slide in PowerPoint 2013.
Author: Geetesh Bajaj
Product/Version: PowerPoint 2010
OS: Windows 8 / 7 / Vista / XP
In PowerPoint 2013 resizing text boxes is easy. You
select any text box and you get eight handles, four on corners, and four on sides -- you then
drag any of these
eight handles to resize. The problem with this approach is that the resized text box you end up with is not
accurate. If you do not need accuracy, then you need not follow the rest of this tutorial -- however there
might be times when you need your text box sized exactly as the size of a picture you have inserted -- or even an exact size based on a specification. Look at
the slide in Figure 1 to understand what we are explaining:
Figure 1: The picture in this slide is much wider than the text box underneath
As you can see in Figure 1 above, the picture is much wider than the text box below that includes a caption for the picture. If we want the width of the text box to exactly match the width of the picture, then we need to do two things:
- Find out the width of the picture.
- Then change the width of the text box to match the width of the picture.
Follow these steps to proceed with these twin objectives in PowerPoint 2013:
- Select the picture -- this activates the Picture Tools Format tab of the
Ribbon, as shown in
Note: The Picture Tools Format tab is a contextual tab. Contextual tabs are special tabs in the Ribbon that are not visible all the time -- they only make an appearance when you are working with a particular slide object which can be edited using special options.
- Within the Size group you'll find the Width and the
Height attributes of the selected picture. Make a note of the Width of the
picture (highlighted in red within Figure 2). For this
particular example the picture width is 4.86 inch.
Figure 2: Width and the Height values of the selected picture
Note: Do you see the Width and Height values in centimeters rather than inches? That's not an issue since you will either see centimeters or inches everywhere in PowerPoint -- but if you want to change the unit of measurement, you will have to do that globally in your Microsoft Windows operating system. The following tutorials will help you:
Change the Unit of Measurement in Windows 8
Change the Unit of Measurement in Windows 7
Change the Unit of Measurement in Windows Vista
Change the Unit of Measurement in Windows XP
- Now, select the text box beneath the picture. Note that you no longer see the
Picture Tools Format tab -- rather you now see the Drawing Tools Format
tab. Both of these tabs are contextual tabs -- and the contextual tab you see in the Ribbon depends upon what
you select on your slide.
For now, access the Drawing Tools Format tab, and click the dialog launcher located at the bottom right corner of the Size group (highlighted in red within Figure 3).
Figure 3: Dialog launcher within the Size group
- This brings up the Format Shape
as shown in Figure 4. Make sure you choose Shape Options tab
(highlighted in red within Figure 4). Then select the
Size & Properties button (highlighted in blue within
Figure 4). Deselect the Lock aspect ratio check-box (highlighted in
green within Figure 4). This ensures that any change in the
width of your text box will not change its height. If this check-box is not already deselected, then leave it
Figure 4: Format Shape Task Pane
- Within the Format Shape Task Pane, locate
the Width option (highlighted in red within
Figure 5) and type in the width value to match the picture width (4.86 inch), You will see the
resized text box immediately on your slide. When done resizing, close the task pane.
Figure 5: Width of the text box changed to match the picture's width
- This will resize the text box, as shown in Figure 6 (compare to
Figure 6: Text box resized
- Once the text box is resized, you might want to
align it with the picture so that it
is positioned right beneath the picture. PowerPoint 2013 also lets you
smart align the text box with the picture.
- In some cases a resized text box may result in your text becoming smaller -- or the text overflows
outside the text box. To correct this you need to tweak the
- Make sure to save your presentation often.
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