How to Create a Scrollable Text Box in PowerPoint: A Step-by-Step Guide

Creating a scrollable text box in PowerPoint is a straightforward process that provides an efficient way to manage large chunks of text within your slides. After inserting a text box and inputting your content, you’ll adjust the text box properties to make it scrollable. This allows your audience to manually navigate through the text, making it ideal for presentations with extensive information.

Once you’ve created a scrollable text box, your PowerPoint presentation will include an interactive element that enables viewers to scroll through text at their own pace. This feature is particularly useful when presenting detailed data, lengthy quotes, or any content that exceeds the space of a standard slide.


Imagine you’re in the middle of a PowerPoint presentation and you reach a slide that’s crammed with text. It’s a challenge we’ve all faced, whether we’re the ones presenting or in the audience. Not only does it look cluttered, but it also makes it hard for your audience to digest the information. Enter the scrollable text box, a nifty solution to this all-too-common dilemma.

Scrollable text boxes are essential for those who need to present a large amount of text without overwhelming their audience. Think about it – wouldn’t it be easier if you could condense that novel of a slide into a compact, scrollable area? This allows the presenter to maintain a clean, professional look while also providing the viewers with the option to read through the text at their leisure.

This feature is particularly relevant for business professionals, educators, and anyone who uses PowerPoint to share information. Whether you’re delivering a report, teaching a class, or leading a seminar, a scrollable text box can make your presentation more engaging and accessible. Now, let’s walk through the process of creating one.

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Create a Scrollable Text Box in PowerPoint

The following steps will guide you through creating a scrollable text box in Microsoft PowerPoint, enhancing the interactivity of your slides.

Step 1: Insert a Text Box

Start by adding a text box to your slide where you want the scrollable content to appear.

Step 2: Input Your Content

Type or paste the text into the text box.

Step 3: Format the Text Box

Right-click on the text box and select ‘Format Shape.’

Step 4: Adjust the Properties

In the Format Shape pane, navigate to the ‘Text Box’ tab and check ‘Do not Autofit.’

Step 5: Add a Scroll Bar

Increase the size of the text box until a scroll bar appears.

Enhanced ReadabilityBy using a scrollable text box, you ensure that your slide remains uncluttered and easy to read. This feature prevents your audience from feeling overwhelmed by too much text on the screen at once.
Interactive ElementA scrollable text box adds an interactive component to your presentation, engaging your audience as they navigate through the text.
Space ManagementIt allows for the efficient use of slide space, enabling you to include more content without compromising the design or readability of your slides.
Limited to Desktop UseScrollable text boxes don’t work in all versions of PowerPoint, particularly mobile or web-based versions.
Potential OveruseThere’s a risk of overloading the text box with too much content, which can lead to a less effective presentation if not managed carefully.
Requires Manual NavigationSome audience members may find it inconvenient to have to manually scroll through the text, particularly during a live presentation.

Additional Information

Creating a scrollable text box in PowerPoint goes beyond just the steps mentioned above. It’s about understanding why and when to use this feature effectively. Scrollable text boxes should be used sparingly and strategically. It’s important to consider the pacing of your presentation and the nature of your audience.

For instance, if you’re presenting to a group that’s not likely to interact with the slide, a scrollable text box might not be the best choice. Additionally, remember to keep the text legible – choose a font size and style that’s easy to read even when scrolling.

Another tip is to use this feature for appendices or reference material that the audience can explore further if they wish, rather than for the main content that you’ll be speaking to. And of course, don’t forget to test your scrollable text box before the presentation to ensure it functions correctly.


  1. Insert a text box.
  2. Input your content.
  3. Format the text box.
  4. Adjust properties to disable autofit.
  5. Expand the text box until a scroll bar appears.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I customize the scroll bar in a PowerPoint text box?

You can adjust the scroll bar’s appearance by modifying the text box size and shape, but PowerPoint does not offer advanced customization options for scroll bars.

Will the scrollable text box work when I convert the presentation to a PDF?

No, the scrollable text box feature is specific to PowerPoint and will not function in a PDF.

Can I link a scrollable text box to another slide?

No, a scrollable text box is an independent feature and cannot be linked to other slides.

Is it possible to have multiple scrollable text boxes on one slide?

Yes, you can have multiple scrollable text boxes on a single slide, as long as there’s enough space to accommodate them.

Can I use a scrollable text box in PowerPoint Online?

Currently, PowerPoint Online does not support the creation of scrollable text boxes.


In conclusion, mastering how to create a scrollable text box in PowerPoint can elevate your presentations to new heights. It’s a simple tool with powerful potential, allowing you to present complex information in a more digestible format. Remember, the best presentations are those that consider the audience’s experience from start to finish. By incorporating scrollable text boxes, you’re not just sharing information; you’re creating an interactive, engaging learning environment.

For further exploration of PowerPoint’s capabilities, Microsoft offers a wealth of resources and tutorials. Dive in, experiment, and don’t be afraid to get creative with your presentations. And always keep your audience’s needs at the center of your design choices – after all, they’re the reason you’re presenting in the first place.

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