Microsoft PowerPoint Tips and Tricks 💡

Blogpost by Jeffrey Clark (Student Digital Champion)

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Like Microsoft Word, PowerPoint is another Microsoft application you’ve probably used before. Planning for delivering a presentation can be daunting and even a frightening task for some, as not only do you have to speak in front of your fellow students, but your PowerPoint presentation will also be on full display. But, have no fear as this blogpost will give you some valuable tips and tricks to help turn a good presentation into a GREAT presentation!

Tip 1: Inserting Excel data into PowerPoint

If your presentation requires you to show data from an existing Microsoft Excel document, there is an easy way to display it within PowerPoint.

  1. On the slide you want your data to appear on, go to Insert > Object
  2. From the Insert Object window, select Create from file > Browse > then select the Microsoft Excel file where the chart you want to include is located > OK
  3. This will automatically insert both the data and chart from your Microsoft Excel document
  4. You can edit this data directly within your PowerPoint document by double-clicking on the chart on your slide
  5. Click outside of the chart when you are finished, and PowerPoint will produce a chart with your Excel data!

Tip 2: Inserting a YouTube video in PowerPoint

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Come and work with us as a Student Digital Champion! 📣

We are looking to appoint two Student Digital Champions to work within our Digital Skills Team for a total of 25 weeks (5 hours per week on Pay Grade 2) next academic year, starting in September 2023.

The Student Digital Champions will support the work of the Digital Skills Team through encouraging other students to take advantage of numerous resources to support them in developing their digital skills. They will also provide a valuable perspective on issues relating to supporting the development of students’ digital skill in general. 

Here’s what our two current Student Digital Champions had to say about their experiences in the role this year:

“My past year working as a Student Digital Champion has been really interesting, rewarding and something completely different for me. I was looking for something to do alongside a lab-based research placement this year and despite not having any previous experience in digital skills, or even a previous digital interest, I have thoroughly enjoyed it. I have really loved being able to use the job as a creative outlet and have developed my graphic designed skills, but I have also developed lots of new skills such as leading focus groups and interviews, conducting user-experience analysis, designing and producing online content for various platforms and writing blogposts. The flexibility of the job has been fantastic, and I am looking forward to continue working with the team next year (who, by the way, are an absolutely lovely group of people), as a nice accompaniment to and change of scene from my normal university work.”

Laurie Stevenson (Year in Industry student, Wildlife Conservation)

“As a Student Digital Champion, I’ve learned lots of valuable skills which will help me in my future career. Getting to know programs such as Word, Excel, and Piktochart have been invaluable to my development as both a student and as an employee. Helping with running stands and on-campus promotional events have really boosted my confidence and interpersonal communication skills. I recommend the Student Digital Champion program to anyone who has a drive to help other students, and for anyone who enjoys trying new things.”

Jeffrey Clark (3rd year student, English & Creative Writing)

Here are examples of the different activities and resources the Student Digital Champions have created this year!

  • Promotional poster with text: How are your digital skills? Friday 17 February, 10:00-13:00 at Level D of the Hugh Owen Library
  • Table and display board with post-it-notes stuck to it.
  • Bookmark containing 10 tips for students

Please note that the closing date for these positions is Monday 31 July 2023. For more information and to apply for these positions, please visit Aber Works. If you do not currently have an Aber Works account or if you have any queries, please contact    

Microsoft Excel Tips and Tricks (Part 2)💡

Blogpost by Laurie Stevenson (Student Digital Champion)

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I published Part 1 of this blogpost earlier this week, where I introduced you to 5 tips and tricks to help you make the most of Excel, and this blogpost contains 5 further tips! If you want to learn more about Excel, please visit my new Excel LinkedIn Learning collection.

Tip 6: Adding in multiple rows or columns at once

If you want to add more than one row or column in one go, this tip will save you the time of having to do this one row at a time.

  • Highlight the number of rows or columns you want
  • Right-click on the highlighted rows or columns
  • Choose Insert from the drop-down menu that appears

Tip 7: Adding bullet points

Finding the button to add these is not as easy as on Microsoft Word but luckily there are a couple of different ways to do this.

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Microsoft Excel Tips and Tricks (Part 1)💡

Blogpost by Laurie Stevenson (Student Digital Champion)

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Feel a sense of dread whenever you have to use Excel for your degree? Well, we’re here to help! Many degrees will require the use of Excel at some point for data analysis, maths calculations, graph or chart creation, project management and much more.

Excel can seem complicated and daunting to some, particularly if you are relatively new to it, so I’ve put together a list of tips and tricks as well as a new Excel LinkedIn Learning collection to help you out.

Keep an eye out on our blog later on this week as I’ll be publishing the second part of this blogpost, which will include 5 more tips and tricks on using Excel!

Tip 1: Useful keyboard shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts involve pressing more than one key simultaneously and if memorised can save you a great deal of time. For example, use CTRL+A to select all the cells in a spreadsheet. Take a look at the following list of good ones to learn:

Ctrl + NCreate a new workbook
Ctrl + OOpen an existing workbook
Ctrl + SSave the active workbook
F12Save the active workbook under a new name, displays the save as dialog box
Ctrl + WClose the active workbook
Ctrl + CCopy the contents of the selected cells to the Clipboard
Ctrl + XCut the contents of the selected cells to the Clipboard
Ctrl + VPaste/insert the content of the Clipboard into the selected cells(s)
Ctrl + ZUndo your last action
Ctrl + POpen the Print dialog
Alt + HOpen the home tab
Alt + NOpen the Insert tab
Alt + POpen the page layout tab
Ctrl + SSave a workbook
Ctrl + 9Hide the selected row(s)
Ctrl + 0Hide the selected column(s)

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Resources to help you prepare for your exams

As we near towards the start of the Semester 2 examinations, we’ve put together a range of resources to help you make the most of technology as you prepare and revise for your exams.

Yellow and Blue banner with laptop, AU logo, and the text Digital Skills Library

Student Digital Skills Library

There are resources in each of the 6 collections that will support you in making the most of technology as you prepare for your exams

This collection has some tips and advice to help you revise and study for your exams

Exam season can be a challenging time for students, this collection gives you some strategies and advice for managing your stress levels around exams

Please also take a look at the general FAQ’s for exams, and if you have any questions about any of the resources listed above, please contact the Digital Skills Team (  

Online Scams: Identifying Scam Emails and Texts

Blogpost by Jeffrey Clark (Student Digital Champion)

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The Internet is a great place to connect with friends, work on projects, and even make money. However, there are some who will use the Internet to try and make money from YOU! Unfortunately, scams are becoming more and more advanced but thankfully I’ve got you covered! In this blogpost I’ll go over scam emails, what they are, how to identify them and what to do when you find them.

Make sure to read the Aberystwyth University page on spam emails before reading this blog post.

What is a phishing email?

A phishing email is an email that is designed to obtain sensitive personal data from you. This data may come in the form of your address, credit card information, or even your bank details! Phishing emails are usually disguised as legitimate business emails like the example below.

Screenshot of a Phishing Email from TustedBank
Image from Wikimedia Commons

It’s easy to see how one might fall for a phishing email like this. Firstly, the email notifies the victim that their bank account may have been compromised which prompts them to act urgently. Secondly, there is nothing suspicious about the link at first glance. So how can you tell the difference between a legitimate email and a phishing email?

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What can I learn in the new Digital Skills Library?

We wrote a blogpost earlier this week introducing you to our new Digital Skills Library. The Digital Skills Library contains six collections of AU and external resources to support students at Aberystwyth University in developing a range of new and existing digital skills.

We have been launching these collections on our IS social media channels throughout this week, but you can also take a look at the images below to find out the range of digital skills you could learn in each of the six collections.

Please note that the Digital Skills Library for staff will be launched in June 2023. If you have any questions or problems accessing the Digital Skills Library, please contact the Digital Skills Team (  

Introducing the Digital Skills Library! 💻🔎

Yellow and Blue banner with laptop, AU logo, and the text Digital Skills Library

We have been working on bringing together a collection of AU and external resources for all students at Aberystwyth University to help develop a range of new and existing digital skills. These resources include teaching you about your digital footprint; and helping to improve your digital identity and wellbeing through providing resources to help with exam stress and information on ‘netiquette’ (online etiquette).  

In addition to this, our Digital Skills Library contains resources to help with your digital learning and development. We have resources available on using specific software, for example how to code using Python, as well as using graphic-design and image-editing software such as Adobe Photoshop and Canva.

We have also kept in mind that there may be some digital skills that you would like to enhance and so we have made sure to include resources to help you learn new tips and tricks in familiar software like Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, Teams, and much more!  

Visit the student Digital Skills Library today and you can also visit our stand on Level D (ground floor) of the Hugh Owen Library this week if you want to learn more.

Please note that the Digital Skills Library for staff will be launched in June 2023. If you have any questions or problems accessing the Digital Skills Library, please email  

Students 📣 What do you think of LinkedIn Learning?

The Student Digital Champions within Information Services are running 1-hour focus groups in March to gather feedback from students on their experiences of using LinkedIn Learning.  You will receive a £10 voucher for an hour of your time.  

These focus groups will take place online on the following dates:

  • Tuesday 14 March, 11:00-12:00
  • Friday 17 March, 15:00-16:00
  • Wednesday 22 March, 11:00-12:00
  • Wednesday 22 March, 15:00-16:00

To take part, please complete this short form to sign-up. Please feel free to contact with any questions.

Using Primo Effectively 📚

Blogpost by Jeffrey Clark (Student Digital Champion)

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Introduction to Primo

It can be challenging to go into any library and find what you’re looking for. Most libraries contain hundreds of books, and the Hugh Owen library has THOUSANDS of books. If you want to find what you’re looking for with clinical precisions, then I recommend you give Primo a try. Primo is a digital library catalogue used by Aberystwyth University. It’s a massive database that allows students to search for books to loan from the University, make lists of books to check-out, and access online versions of reading materials. It has tonnes of features which have made my time at Aberystwyth that much easier. While it’s easy to see it as ‘just Google search for the library’, it’s much more than that. From saving lists of books to requesting books I need for my course, Primo has saved me time and from many headaches during my studies. In this blog post I’ll be going over Primo, what it does, and how to make it work for you.

Using the search function

Using Primo’s search function is easy. Simply type the name of the item you wish to find and Primo will tell you where it is in the Hugh Owen library or if you can access it online (some items have both online and physical copies.) Primo’s search function is set to search for ‘all items’ by default, which can muddy your search results a bit by giving you too many options.

At the bottom of the search bar, there are three drop-down menus which have options to help you find EXACTLY what you’re looking for. For example, let’s say that I want to search only for books by John Steinbeck. From the bottom of the search bar, I would select ‘Books’, then ‘with my exact phrase’, selecting ‘as author/creator’ and finally searching ‘John Steinbeck.’

Screenshot of Primo showing how to insert text in the search bar and the different filters

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