Because i love kittens

How to reduce margins and save space on powerpoint handouts for open book exams

This might have come a tad late since I’m already in year 3 and most of my friends would have taken their GEKS/GEMS or open book exams and stuff. However this problem has been bothering me for quite a while. I love Earth enough to want to do my part to save it. I occasionally embark on inspired pledges to eat vegetables (those last for barely a week).I try not to print stuff unless I really have to. An open book exam that calls for students to bring in 18 lectures x40 slides each would understandably not be very sympathetic to that cause.

Now everyone knows that if you want to print powerpoint slides, you can select a 9 slide handout option that typically looks like this.

OMGWTFFFBBQMIDGET WHY ARE THE MARGINS SO FAT? (its not much better in landscape mode either)

To solve this problem. go to powerpoint and save all your slides as pictures in a folder. It will ask you whether you want to export all the slides or just the current slide. Select all slides.

From then on its a simple matter of opening any image or media manager and printing out the slides as a grid/contact/wallet layout. I know of several programs that can do this. Photoshop, Picasa, Irfanview, Adobe Bridge, etc. The steps for creating a contact sheet can easily be googled. I only have experience with Adobe Lightroom, so I am going to illustrate the steps with that. I know Windows Live Gallery comes with an option for that as well but I don’t really like the default windows utilities because they aren’t really customisable (why no output options Windows Movie Maker!!!!!)

Go to print, adjust the number of columns and rows you want, reduce the margins in between and Voila! 15 slide handout. (Ok I lied. When I said I was going to illustrate the steps, I really meant I was going to give you a single screenshot hoping that through the power of inference people will figure out how to operate an obscure software because well I’m just too lazy. And my grapes need to be farmed. But really its simple!)

15/9 = 60% savings of  paper real estate. Oh and I think the slides in this are bigger than the ones in the default 9 slide too. Final result – If you find that its too cramped for you, a more generous setting, say a 2 x5 grid gives 10 wonderful high resolution slides.

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One response

  1. freebird

    for me i go to printing preferences and choose to print a number of pages to a page.

    April 10, 2010 at 11:40 pm

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