3 Tips for Importing PowerPoint Slides Into Storyline

One of the great features of Articulate Storyline is the ability to import slides from PowerPoint. However, Storyline doesn’t always import your slides properly. Depending on what features (animations, slide transitions, SmartArt, etc.) you use in PowerPoint, they may or may not import properly into Storyline.

Check out this post and video for three tips for importing PowerPoint slides into Storyline.

Tip #1: Check Your Slide Size.

When importing PowerPoint slides into Storyline, always make sure to check the dimensions of your slides. By default, Storyline sets its slides to a 4:3 aspect ratio. If you’re importing PowerPoint slides that are set at a 16:9 aspect ratio (or something else), you may end up with some objects becoming distorted or placed off your slide.

You can avoid this by make sure your slide size is the same in Storyline as the slides you’re importing from PowerPoint.

Tip #2: Check Your Animations & Slide Transitions.

When importing PowerPoint slides into Storyline, always check your animations and slide transitions. While Storyline supports most of the same animations and slide transitions as PowerPoint, you’ll run into issues with emphasis animations and a few others. When you attempt to import a PowerPoint slide that includes an animation or slide transition that’s not supported, Storyline will either remove the animation or replace it with a fade in / fade out animation.

You can avoid this by only using the animations and slide transitions supported in Storyline.

Tip #3: Check Your SmartArt.

When importing PowerPoint slides into Storyline, always check your SmartArt. When you attempt to import PowerPoint slides that include a SmartArt graphic, Storyline will convert it into an image, which is not editable.

You can avoid this by converting your SmartArt into shapes, which Storyline will import and let you edit.

The Bottom Line

While it’s great that you can import PowerPoint slides directly into Articulate Storyline, you need to decide whether or not it’s the best solution for you. Depending on the complexity of your content, it may be easier to just build it directly in Storyline.

Either way, I hope these tips make it a bit easier the next time you need to import PowerPoint slides into Storyline! If you want to learn more about what features are (and are not) supported when importing PowerPoint slides into Storyline, check out this article from Articulate.

Additional Resources

Tim Slade
Tim Slade is a speaker, author, and award-winning freelance eLearning designer. Having spent the last decade working to help others elevate their eLearning and visual communications content, Tim has been recognized and awarded within the eLearning industry multiple times for his creative and innovative design aesthetics. Tim is a regular speaker at international eLearning conferences, is a recognized Articulate Super Hero, author of The eLearning Designer’s Handbook and creator of The eLearning Designer's Academy.

10 Responses to “3 Tips for Importing PowerPoint Slides Into Storyline

  • Thanks Tim!

    Michael Fimian

  • Great tips. I also like to ensure I remove any un-used master slides within PowerPoint to declutter the slide templates.

  • Hi Tim: I would like to add another item when importing PPT to Storyline. I generally view Slide Sorter in PPT to see if there are “chunks” BEFORE I import the slides. For example, many SMEs just create slides without dividing the presentation into sections. They may have 50, 60 slides. Instead of importing them in one fell swoop, I import the slides into separate scenes. Scenes make for better understanding and navigation.

  • I’ve been looking for a clear explanation regarding Aspect ratio for a while. You nailed it. I’m grateful. Very clear. Immensely informative.

  • Reina Ellis
    3 years ago

    Thank you very much! This was extremely helpful, especially re: smart art. Do you know a way to import the notes from ppt? I’m using the review feature to consolidate feedback, and reviewers need to also comment on the notes. Thank you!

    • I’m glad you found it helpful, Reina! Anything you put in the notes section should import; however, any comments added from the Review tab will not import. I hope that makes sense!

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