Screen Recording Tool on PowerPoint

Well, just when I was ready to begin to explore some of the new features that will be available in Office 2016 (just released) I came across a feature in PowerPoint 2013 that I hadn’t noticed until recently. Now, why I hadn’t noticed this feature until recently is because it was not originally available in the initial release of PowerPoint 2013, but came as an automatic update. So, one day while I was working on a presentation, I looked at my screen and said to myself “when did this button show up?” Then when I tried it I was once again amazed at how powerful and easy to use PowerPoint can be.

So, what is this new (as of February 2015 update) feature? The Screen Recording tool.

PowerPoint has long had the ability to work with videos that were already recorded. Video clips could be inserted and edited with a variety of playback options. But now, with this new tool, you can actually record your own video of anything you are doing on your computer with voice-over narration and use the video in your presentation or save the video as a separate file for other purposes. And, it’s amazingly easy to use.

Let me show you where to find this tool and how to use it. First of all you’ll need to have PowerPoint open, and you’ll also need either a microphone or a headset with a microphone connected to your computer. The only other requirement is to have the program window that you wish to record open (but not minimized), and make sure the program window that you wish to record is the last window you look at before you switch to PowerPoint.

Then, when you are ready to begin recording, click on the Insert Tab and go to the Media Group where you will see the Screen Recording button as pictured below:


When you click this button your screen will go to the last open program window you were viewing. On the top of this screen you will see a set of tools called the Control Dock:


On the Control Dock, click the button labeled Select Area. When you see the cross haired cursor (it looks like a plus sign: +), click and drag to select the area of the screen you want to record as pictured below:


Then click the Record button on the Control Dock. You will see a countdown window (pictured below).  When the countdown finishes begin to work in the application window. Any mouse movements, points and clicks, menu choices and changes to your application will be recorded and if you are speaking into your microphone as you’re working, you will also record a voice-over to your video at the same time.


When you wish to stop the recording process, you either click on the Stop button in the Control Dock, or use the keyboard shortcut Windows logo key + Shift + Q to end the recording process. Your screen will then switch back to PowerPoint and the video you’ve just recorded will be placed on to the slide you were on in your PowerPoint presentation.


Once the video is on your slide it can be treated just like any other video – the Video Tools Tab will be available if you wish to work with the various options for playback of the video within your presentation. All you need to do is then save your presentation and you’re done!

There is also one other possible use of the video that you just recorded. If you don’t need or want to incorporate your video in a PowerPoint presentation you can also right-click on the video object on your slide and save the video as a separate media file for independent playback:


So simple, yet so powerful!

That’s it for this month. Coming soon to a blog near you – Office 2016 hits the streets! Watch this space…


  1. Wow, didn’t know there is a screen recording tool available now, thanks for the guide and great share.

  2. This was a welcome addition to the 2013 version when added last year and is a fantastic tool and records good quality, small videos also. Smaller than the Camtasia or Camstudio ones, but with less parameters than these pieces of software – I hope more will be added at a later point.
    Do you have any idea if there’s a shortcut key to Pause the video recording, and then restart recording once I am ready.

Leave a Reply