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Nudge Objects to Control Placement on PowerPoint Slides

Use Arrow Keys on the Number Keypad to Nudge Graphic Objects

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Snap Objects to grid - nudge graphic objects in PowerPoint

Snap Objects to grid

© Wendy Russell
Sometimes you want to place a graphic object "just so" on a PowerPoint slide, but as you drag it with your mouse, it jumps to a spot on its own. Of course, this is near where you want it to be, but not quite the right place. This can be very frustrating.

The quick way around this is to use the arrow keys on the keyboard, (found on the number keypad) instead of dragging the object with the mouse. These keys will "nudge" the object left, right, up or down, a little at a time, until you can place it just where you want it.

The default nudge setting is 6 points. Points are units of the standard type size. There are 72 points in one inch, so each point measures 0.167 inches – a very small measurement.

Nudge Setting Still Too Large
If the default setting for nudging is still too large for your purposes, you can make the increments of movement even smaller. Hold down the Ctrl key while using the arrow key. The nudge setting is reduced to 1.25 points, for finer manipulation of the object placement.

Reduce Default Nudge Setting
When you first install PowerPoint, the Snap object to grid feature is turned on. This determines the setting for the nudge as well. The default nudge setting is 6 points, when the Snap to Grid is on. If you turn the Snap object to grid feature off, the nudge setting reduces to 1.25 points.

  1. Choose View > Grid and Guides…
  2. Remove the check mark beside Snap object to grid.

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