I want to create a manual from a PowerPoint presentation, where the information in the Notes section are part of the printout. So that I can format the slide titles to be part of a table of contents, I want the slide title to be in text, not just part of the slide image.

As export options, I can either choose Notes below slides (but the slide title is not in text format), or I can print the Outline only (but the slide notes aren't included.)

In the Notes Master, I see a Header box, and tried to put a slide title there, but there does not seem to be a way to specify the slide title for each slide automatically. that is ,I can't include a variable for the title in the Header box.

If I look in Outline view, I don't see the notes text.

Is there a way to automatically create a handout that includes both the Outline information and the notes text?

  • I don't know of any way you can do this with PPT as it comes out of the box, but with a bit of VBA, you should be able to create e.g. a text file that includes slide titles, slide text AND notes text. I don't have a complete solution prepared, but you can find most of the bits and pieces you'd need to do this in VBA on my PPT FAQ site: pptfaq.com Search the main page for terms like "export" and "text". That'll take you to most of the right pages. Aug 30 '18 at 15:28
  • Thanks for the response, @SteveRindsberg I actually started at PPTools and then got sidetracked investigating their macros like Thor and PPT to HTML! Will double back and try again. Just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing anything more basic.
    – Johanna
    Aug 31 '18 at 14:10
  • Sorry to be so distracting. ;-) Actually PPT2HTML might be able to do the job too; it's not really an HTML generator; it extracts stuff from PPT and plugs it into special fields in a template file, one that's usually HTML but needn't be. Aug 31 '18 at 19:42
  • Another thought ... would PowerPoint's notes page printouts do the job for you IF they had the slide title as text somewhere on the page in addition to showing the slide as an image? Sep 2 '18 at 16:52
  • Yes! Exactly. In fact, I've been going through your VBA tutorial to increase my understanding. I can identify slide titles now, but haven't figured out how to copy them to the Notes pages...
    – Johanna
    Sep 4 '18 at 15:13

This will pick up the each slide's title text and add it to the notes page. Modify as needed to change the text formatting/position.

Sub AddTitlesToNotesPages()

    Dim oSld As Slide
    Dim oShp As Shape
    Dim sTitleText As String

    For Each oSld In ActivePresentation.Slides

        ' get the slide's title text
        sTitleText = GetTitleText(oSld)

        ' add a text shape with the text to notes page
        ' placement is totally arbitrary; edit to suit
        Set oShp = oSld.NotesPage.Shapes.AddTextbox(msoTextOrientationHorizontal, _
                   0, 0, 500, 100)
        With oShp.TextFrame.TextRange
            .Text = sTitleText
            ' modify other stuff as needed
            .Font.Name = "Arial"
            .Font.Color.RGB = RGB(0, 0, 0)  ' black
            ' and so on
        End With
    Next     ' Slide

End Sub

Function GetTitleText(oSld As Slide) As String
' Returns the title text for oSld if any, or "Slide xxx" if not
    Dim oShp As Shape
    Dim sTemp As String
    For Each oShp In oSld.Shapes
        If oShp.Type = msoPlaceholder Then
            If oShp.PlaceholderFormat.Type = ppPlaceholderCenterTitle Or oShp.PlaceholderFormat.Type = ppPlaceholderTitle Then
                sTemp = oShp.TextFrame.TextRange.Text
            End If
        End If

    ' if we got this far and didn't find a slide title:
    If Len(sTemp) = 0 Then
        ' return the slide index number
        GetTitleText = "Slide " & CStr(oSld.SlideIndex)
        ' return the title
        GetTitleText = sTemp
    End If

End Function
  • Awesome! I was hung up on trying to shove the text title in the notes shape. Didn't even occur to me to make a separate box. Also, I still get lost in the Object viewer and haven't learned when to use ppXXX or msoXXX. In any case, this gets me over a huge hurdle. Thanks!
    – Johanna
    Sep 5 '18 at 13:48
  • Off top of head, I'd generally use the ppXXX constant first, if available. Glad this helped. Sep 5 '18 at 14:34
  • Gotcha. thanks again. PPT is still getting the best of me. Even thought the title appears on the Notes page view, it doesn't print out with notes when I use export>Create Handouts>Notes below slides. I assume because the text box doesn't appear on the Notes master(?). Playing around with it now...
    – Johanna
    Sep 5 '18 at 16:26
  • Ah. Printing the notes pages works as expected. Unfortunately, I'm trying to get them into Word. Still working on it....
    – Johanna
    Sep 5 '18 at 16:43

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