April 2003 // Volume 41 // Number 2 // Tools of the Trade // 2TOT2

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How to Create and Use an Interactive PowerPoint Quiz Game

This article describes a Jeopardy style quiz game that can be developed using Microsoft PowerPoint software. It can be used by Extension educators in a number of educational settings, including 4-H club learning activities, kiosk displays, and Web-based learning modules. The quiz consists of 51 slides and includes a game board with 25 question slides and 25 answer slides. Step-by step instructions are provided to develop an interactive quiz using the hyperlink features of PowerPoint to connect answers to questions and questions back to the game board.

Barbara O'Neill
Interim Extension Specialist in Financial Resource Management
Rutgers Cooperative Extension
Internet Address: oneill@aesop.rutgers.edu

This article describes a Jeopardy style interactive quiz game that can be developed using Microsoft PowerPoint software. There are several educational settings in which such a quiz could be beneficial to Extension educators including the following:

  • A 4-H club learning activity with members assigned to competing teams
  • A recreational activity at 4-H camp
  • A method for 4-H club members to make public presentations
  • A presentation loaded into a free-standing kiosk or laptop computer display at fairs, conferences, or malls
  • A class activity to summarize the content of a course (any topic)
  • A pre-test to ascertain learners' existing knowledge before a course
  • A Web-based learning activity available to learners online 24/7/365

The first step in developing a PowerPoint quiz game is to construct the grid for a quiz with 25 boxes, five each labeled 100, 200, 300, 400, and 500 (point values). This means that the slide presentation will have 51 slides: the game board (slide 1), followed by 25 question slides and 25 answer slides.

Creating Grid Guidelines

To get started, go to "View" and "Guides," and click the checkmark before "Guides." This will activate the guidelines, and you'll see a blank screen with a cross-like pattern that looks like a small "t." The "Ruler" command should also be activated if it is not already.

Next, drag and drop the horizontal line, using the guidelines, so that there are lines at 0, 1.25, and 2.5. Do the same with the vertical lines, and set the guides at 0, 1.5, and 3. Then go to "Format" and "Background," and choose a solid color from the color wheel or a light-colored textured background from the box labeled "Fill Effects."

Creating Game Show Buttons

The next step is to construct the game show buttons (i.e., the squares for selecting the quiz questions). To do this, select the "AutoShapes" button on the "Draw" bar. Select "Action Buttons." Choose the blank square on the top left. Draw a rectangle to fit into the space in the first column, second row. Choose the same background for the AutoShape that you have on your slide.

To create the remaining 24 buttons, place the mouse over the first button. Hold the control key down and the left mouse button down, and drag to copy the button into the other blank rectangles created by the gridlines. Leave the top row blank to insert text boxes for your five quiz category titles. Type in the point value of the questions: the first row is 100, the second row is 200, the third row is 300, the fourth row is 400, and the last row is 500. Each of the buttons will be used as a hyperlink to the appropriate answer slide.

Inserting Textboxes

The next step is to insert the textboxes for the five quiz categories. Click on the "Textbox" button on the draw bar. Draw a textbox in the first grid rectangle in the top row. Hold the control button down, left click with the mouse, and drag and drop into each of the top row grid rectangles. These textboxes will contain the category titles. For example, in the quiz developed for the Cooperative Extension Investing For Your Future (IFYF) program, the five category titles are: Basic Terms, Ownership Assets, Fixed-Income Assets, Mutual Funds, and Investor Resources. These categories correspond to the main topics of the IFYF home study course, at <http://www.investing.rutgers.edu/>.

Creating Game Show Slides

After the first slide (game board) is constructed, it is time to create a question slide and then a second slide for the answer to that question. This process will be repeated 24 times for a total of 25 questions and 25 answers to match the 25 squares on the game board. Users will click on the answer slide first and connect with the corresponding question slide, just like on the game show.

Each question slide will then hyperlink back to the main Jeopardy game board (first slide). To do this, choose any AutoShape hyperlink button (e.g., arrows), and add it to the question slide. Answer slides should have the title "The Answer Is" typed on them, and question slides should include the title "The Question Is." Use the text box function to create these titles.

After the first answer/question slides are created, the remaining 24 sets can be copied and pasted in slide sorter view. The even-numbered quiz slides (2,4,6, etc.) are answer slides, and the odd-numbered slides (3, 5, 7, etc.) are question slides. Starting with slide 2 and continuing through slide 51, each answer and question sequence follows one another (e.g., answer, question, answer, question, etc.).

It is advisable to write out your 25 quiz questions in advance, by category, referring to appropriate research-based information sources as needed. Then prioritize the questions so that the hardest questions garner the most points. You may also want to pre-test the quiz questions with clients or co-workers to check for ease of understanding.

To hyperlink each answer slide to the main game board, go back to the main game board (slide 1). In slide view, click on the question button first (e.g., 100 point button in row 1). Then click on "Slide Show," "Action Settings," and "Slide." You'll see a dialog box with the numbers of all of the slides in the presentation. Pick out the even-numbered slide number that corresponds to the appropriate button on the game board. You will always be linking a game board button to an even-numbered (answer) slide.

Starting with the 100-point answer button in the category in the top left corner, link to slide 2, which contains the text for the first answer. The 200-point question beneath it would follow next in sequence. Work down the point values in a particular category as you construct your slide show and then across to the next category, ending up with the 500 point value question on the bottom button on the far right side of the game board.

Completing the Interactive Quiz

Once your slides are hyperlinked, it is then time to type in the text for each question and answer, again using the text box function of PowerPoint. Add digital clip art or photos as appropriate to enhance the appearance of your slides, but don't overdo it. An excessive number of graphics or animations on each slide can detract from the overall message. Often, "less is more." Font sizes and styles and colors should be uniform throughout the presentation, and the typeface should be easy to read from a distance.

The final step is to check all the links and make sure that they work correctly so that each game board button links to a different question. Go into slide show view, and run the program as if you were delivering the presentation as a class lecture. If there are presentation problems, go back to "Action Settings," and check for errors. Also be sure to run a final spell-check and proofread a hard copy of the presentation slides, which can be distributed to participants after an activity.

It also should be noted that additional slides cannot be added to the body of a quiz show presentation once the hyperlinks are established. This would destroy the sequencing of the program slides. Additional slides can be added at the end, however, such as a slide with contact information for the Extension educator or the organization's Web site address. Simply don't press the "Auto Shape" hyperlink button on the last question slide when you are presenting the quiz, so that you can access these additional slides.


In summary, interactive PowerPoint quizzes are a fun and creative way of delivering information to Extension clientele. They can be used in a variety of educational settings to stimulate interest in a topic. This article has provided step-by-step instructions to create a Jeopardy style quiz game using Microsoft PowerPoint software.

Busy Extension educators who would rather work from an existing template can also contact the author to purchase a CD-ROM containing the interactive PowerPoint quiz that was developed for the Cooperative Extension Investing For Your Future program. The CD-ROM also includes another file containing 51 hyperlinked slides with blank textboxes.