How to Print a PowerPoint Presentation

Printing your PowerPoint presentation allows you to have a physical copy to reference or provide handouts to your audience. With the right settings, you can optimize the printed version for your needs. Follow this simple step-by-step guide to print your presentation correctly.

Choose Your Print Layout

The first step is deciding on the print layout. PowerPoint offers four main options:

Full Page Slides – Each slide prints on a separate page. Best for checking details or as speaker notes.

Notes Pages – Combines slides and speaker notes. One slide per page with notes underneath. Great for handouts.

Outline View – Prints the title and main text from slides in outline format. Useful for overview.

Handouts – Multiple slides per page with optional lines for notes. Perfect for audience handouts.

Consider how you or your audience will use the printed version. Handouts engage the audience, while full slides or notes help the speaker.

Access the Print Panel

Once you’ve decided on a layout, access the print panel:

  1. Click on the File tab.
  2. Select Print on the left sidebar.

The print layout options will display on the left. Select your choice and view a preview on the right.

Choose Print Options

Customize options for your print job under Settings:

  • Slides – Print all, select a range, or just the current slide.
  • Color – Color, grayscale, or pure black and white.
  • Paper Size & Orientation
  • Copies – Single or multiple collated/uncollated copies.

Consider ink usage, cost, audience needs, and convenience. Pure black saves ink but lacks visual impact. Multiple copies ensure enough handouts.

Print Hidden Slides

If your presentation contains hidden slides you may still want to print them:

  1. Click on Settings.
  2. Check the box for Print Hidden Slides.

This exposes skipped slides only in the printed handouts or notes.

Add Headers, Footers and Page Numbers

Customize the look using headers, footers and page numbers:

  1. Click on the File tab.
  2. Choose Print.
  3. Click on the button for Header & Footer.

Now you can enable elements like:

  • Date
  • Slide number
  • Footer with title/text
  • Background graphics

Matching branding colors/logos maintain professionalism. Page numbers help keep handouts organized.

Print a Test Copy

Before finalizing your print job, print a single test copy:

  1. Under Copies select 1 copy.
  2. Click Print.

Review the test print for errors, layout issues or print quality. Refine settings as needed before committing to multiple copies.

Troubleshooting Printing Issues

Problems occasionally occur during printing. Try these troubleshooting tips:

  • Confirm printer is on and connected.
  • Check paper levels and ink/toner.
  • Update printer drivers if outdated.
  • Use print preview to confirm slides are displaying properly.
  • Adjust PowerPoint print settings.
  • Print a test page from another program as comparison.

Pinpointing the cause helps solve the issue, whether system, software or hardware related.

Print Handouts Your Audience Will Love

With attention to detail when preparing your print layout and options, you can produce professional, perfectly formatted PowerPoint handouts. Engage your audience and enhance your presentation when you provide great looking, informative printed materials.

Follow these PowerPoint printing best practices for flawless results every time you present.