powerpoint logo

Highlighting text draws attention to it. If you subscribe to Office 365, you can highlight text directly in PowerPoint. If you use a desktop version of PowerPoint, you’ll need to use a workaround. We’ll show you both ways.

Highlighting Text in PowerPoint (Office 365 Subscribers)

If you’re an Office 365 subscriber, go ahead and open PowerPoint and move to the slide that contains the text you want to highlight. Once there, select the text by clicking and holding the left mouse button and dragging your cursor over the text.

drag cursor over text in powerpoint

After you select the text, a popup presents several different font options. Go ahead and click the highlighter icon.

Your text will now be highlighted.

highlighted text Office 365

You can also choose between several different colors, as well. If you’d like something besides yellow, click the arrow next to the highlighter icon. A menu will then appear, presenting several different colors. Choose the one you like best.

choose highlighter color

You can also find all of these options in the “Font” section of the “Home” tab.

font section of the home tab

Highlighting Text in PowerPoint (Non-Office 365 Subscribers)

This method is more time consuming than it is difficult. If you’re not an Office 365 subscriber, then you don’t have a native highlight tool in PowerPoint, meaning you’ll need to work in one of the other Office applications to make this work. You can use Excel or Word, whichever you prefer. We’ll be using Word.

Go ahead and open Word and enter in the text that you would like to highlight and transfer over to PowerPoint.

sample text in word

Select the text by clicking and holding the left mouse button and dragging the cursor over the text. Once the text is selected, a pop-up window appears, and you can click the highlight button to add highlighting. You can also click the down arrow to the highlight button’s right to choose different colors.

And your text is now highlighted.

highlighted text in Word

Select the text again, then press Ctrl+C to copy the text to your clipboard and then head back over to PowerPoint.

In PowerPoint, paste the text wherever you want it by pressing Ctrl+V. Your text will now appear in the slide but without the highlight.

transferred text no highlight

Next, in the “Paste Options” menu that appears, select the “Keep Source Formatting” option.

Keep Source Formatting

Your text will now appear with the highlight.

highlighted text in powerpoint transferred from Word

Using the Glow Text Effect

While this isn’t exactly highlighted text, the effect is very similar. If you’re not an Office 365 subscriber and you don’t want to open up a different Office application to highlight your text and transfer it over, you could consider using PowerPoint’s “Glow” effect.

First, select that text.

drag cursor over text in powerpoint

Next, in the “WordArt Styles” group of the “Format” tab, click “Text Effects.”

text effects

Select “Glow” from the menu that appears.

A sub-menu will appear with different colors for the glow effect. If you find the one you like, go ahead and select it. In this example, we’re looking for a yellow glow, so we’ll select “More Glow Colors” at the bottom of the menu.

more colors

Finally, we’ll select yellow.

select yellow

Your text will now take on the yellow glow effect, looking very similar to highlighted text.

glow effect

Profile Photo for Marshall Gunnell Marshall Gunnell
Marshall is a writer with experience in the data storage industry. He worked at Synology, and most recently as CMO and technical staff writer at StorageReview. He's currently an API/Software Technical Writer based in Tokyo, Japan, runs VGKAMI and ITEnterpriser, and spends what little free time he has learning Japanese.
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