How large should texts in presentations be so that they can also be read in the back rows? Here is the answer!
For the correct PowerPoint font size, Guy Kawasaki’s rule of thumb is: “The smallest font size you should use is the age of the oldest viewer divided by two. Therefore, it is better not to use references and footnotes in the presentation, both belong in the handouts and are no longer recognizable from row 2 anyway. From our experience, font sizes below 14 points are not suitable for a presentation that is held. For headlines you should use at least 26 points when creating your slide master.
You should also avoid too small font sizes for charts and diagrams. Especially if you are presenting to a larger audience.
PowerPoint font size for reading presentations:
If you create a PowerPoint presentation to be sent by e-mail and then read on the monitor or printed (reading presentation = all information is on the slides), then slightly different rules apply: at least 10-12 points for continuous text and 16 points for headlines.
Line spacing is also important!
For the line spacing (ZAB) you should set approx. 120%-130% of the font size. If the line spacing corresponds to the point size of the font, the text is uncomfortable to read. The line spacing (ZAB) is too BIG if it is >150% of the font size.
Very long lines are harder to read and should be softly wrapped with SHIFT + ENTER! Maximum 40 to 60 characters per line.
The size of the slides also plays an important role: the smaller the slide, the larger the font size.
16:9 widescreen film 33,87 x 14,29 cm and 4:3 film 25,4 x 19,05 cm
Heading: approx. 26. point // Continuous text: 14 – 16 point.
Heading: from 16 points // Continuous text: 10 – 12 points.
16:9 wide screen slide in the format 25,4 x 19,05 cm (old 16:9 format)
Heading: approx. 33 points // Continuous text: 18 – 21 points.
Heading: from 21 points // Continuous text: 13 – 13 points.
The optimal line spacing (ZAB): Rule of thumb: factor approx. 120%-130% of the font size. Alternatively, select “Simple” in PowerPoint line spacing.