5 – PowerPoint

DOWN 1 place in 2021

PowerPoint is Microsoft’s versatile presentation tool

Website: microsoft.com/powerpoint
Cost: Commercial. Free trial
Availability: Download. Online at Office365

Ranking on the 2021 sub-lists

Top 150 Tools for
Personal Learning: 13
Top 150 Tools for
Workplace Learning: 4
Top 150 Tools for
Education: 3

Overall rankings in the previous 14 surveys: 2007-2020

2020: 4 2019: 3 2018: 2 2017: 3 2016: 4 2015: 5 2014: 6
2013: 5 2012: 8 2011:  19 2010: 21 2009: 13 2008: 8 2007: 5

Comments on PowerPoint in 2021

“PowerPoint has been adding a lot of new capabilities lately. Which, taken in combination with amazing enhancements like BrightSlide, make it an attractive tool for digital projects including motion graphics, videos, ebooks and more.” Mike Taylor, Consultant, USA

“PowerPoint reminds me of WordPress in some ways. It was meant for one thing at the very beginning but has become a quick and easy tool to generate design mockups, infographics, and so much more. I guarantee that most of the functions I use it for could be done better by another tool. But I can work fast in PowerPoint because I use it enough.” Tim Waxenfelter, USA

“Death by PowerPoint is always a risk, but it’s still a great tool to make things clear. We also are looking at Storytemple to integrate with PowerPoint” L&D, Netherlands

“It’s ubiquitous and great for nearly everything except tracking user input and working effectively online with all of its features.” Digital Learning Developer, UK

“It has so much features that once discovered make your life easier. My latest discovery was the selection pane and whyy did it take me so long to find it?!” Olga Anishenkova, eLearning Design Team Lead, Spain

“I may be the only person on my team who puts PowerPoint on their list. I still find myself opening good ol’ PowerPoint with regular frequency. I use PowerPoint most often as a tool to storyboard eLearning ideas (since Storyline is essentially fancy PowerPoint). I also occasionally find myself in front of virtual audiences and need to use PowerPoint creatively to engage learners.” Lauren Westcott, L&D Manager, USA

“For all that it is a much maligned tool, PowerPoint is still a regular part of my toolbox. I use it to create mock-ups of elearning layouts and occasionally for basic image editing. As I regularly speak at conferences and online events, I also use PowerPoint to create slides for those sessions.” Christy Tucker, USA

“Still the tried and true, but with all the new drawing tools, sometimes it’s just easier to make simple icons in PowerPoint vs. that other HUGE illustration program. It’s easy to use, and easy to create content, especially by others outside of L&D.” Kely McKeown, Senior Manager, Corporate Global Training and Systems, USA

Previous comments

“A versatile tool that can be used for many purposes, not just presentations. Image editing, print design and more.” Learning Technology Developer, USA, 2020

“For presentations but also for infographics” Sacha Bos, Project Coordinator, Netherlands, 2020

“I use PowerPoint not only to create presentations, but also to design graphics that I save and use in tools to create elearning modules. I see PowerPoint as an easy graphic design and photo editing tool.” Training Manager, Switzerland, 2020

“Increasingly, I am using Powerpoint not just to design workshops and lectures, but to create assignments for students.” Aaron Johannes, Instructor / Consultant / Researcher, Canada, 2020

“PowerPoint is another tried and tested tool for me. Beyond slide decks and presentations, I use it for graphics, print projects, videos and more. Microsoft has been adding tons of great updates and it just keeps getting better and better.” Mike Taylor, USA, 2020

“surprisingly versatile and realiabl. Transfers into Storyline seemlessly” Alnisha Simmons, Instructional designer/Lecturer/e-Learning Developer, Bermuda, 2020

“Powerpoint is a go-to tool for me to use for so many different tasks, such as saving screenshots as image files, creating nifty (and simple) graphics for use in eLearning, and it’s capability for video recording, etc.” Susan Manos, Global Learning & Development Director, USA, 2020

“While I’ve experimented with other services (especially Google Slides) I always find myself returning to PowerPoint because it’s an exceptional authoring environment. For me, it’s not just a place where I author presentations (though I do, a lot) it’s also the place where I create most of my graphics; the ‘insert shapes’ tool allows me to create pretty much anything I need, without the need for a separate application.” Stephen Downes, Canada, 2020

“When it comes to producing stuff (i.e. resources), I now believe in keeping things as simple as possible; I don’t over-engineer content. I find that I can quickly create effective content using basic tools like Word and PowerPoint. At the end of the day, the people I create the content for are adults and don’t need trivial or gratuitous “bells and whistles” to be encouraged to read the stuff – they just want the content.” Jane Hart, UK, 2020

Quick Guide to PowerPoint 

Here you will find some basic guidance and links to resources on how to use PowerPoint for teaching, training, learning and development.

Access to the Quick Guides is currently only for registered users. Registration will open up again shortly.