In PowerPoint there is a task pane which is named Selection And Visibility which controls all the components (shapes, objects, placeholders) on a slide. Sometimes when these components are stacked on each other, it is difficult to select each and one of them.
To activate the Selection And Visibility task pane, we must select the Home tab and from the area of the ribbon named Editing to select the arrow at the right of the command Selection and from the drop down menu to select the command Selection Pane as shown in the image below.
Another way to show the Selection And Visibility task pane is to select an object in our slide. Once selected the Picture Tools tab activates and under the Format tab and in the area Arrange we select the command Selection Pane as shown in the image below.
Whatever way we use the task pane named Selection And Visibility appears at the right of our screen. In the area of the Selection And Visibility task pane which is named Shapes On This Slide all the components that are in the current slide appear as shown below.
By selecting a name of one element from the task pane, the corresponding element gets selected in the slide. In the image below I have selected Smiley Face 4 from the task pane and right away the corresponding element has got selected in the slide as we can see.
To rename and element from the task pane, we just select the name of it and then by double clicking on it with our mouse in the text box we are able to edit it as shown below.
If we want to hide an element from our slide and not to delete it, at the right of the name of the element in the task pane, we can select once on the icon of the eye that appears. Straight away the element is hidden from the slide, and the eye at the right of the element in the task pane does not appear. With the same procedure we activate the appearance of the element.
At the bottom of the task pane the following buttons are available:
Show All: By selecting this command all the elements that were hidden in our slide appear again at their position.
Hide All: By selecting this command we hide all the elements in our slide.
Re-order Buttons: By pressing the up or down arrow, when we have an element selected in our slide, we adjust the order of appearance of the element in order with another element. The order of appearance of an element makes sense when one element covers another element, and in this situation we decide which element will be in front and which behind. The re-order buttons are useful in PowerPoint, when we want to rearrange the order of appearance of elements in a presentation.
In the image below I have also activated the Animation Pane next to the Selection And Visibility Pane, where we can see that the same names that we had given in the Selection And Visibility Pane, stand also in the Animation Pane.
The Selection and Visibility task pane in Word appears on the Home tab and from the area of the window named Editing, we select the command Select and from the drop down menu we select the command Selection Pane.
The Selection And Visibility task pane in Excel appears on the Page Layout tab and from the area of the ribbon named Arrange we select the command Selection Pane.
You can also check out the video below, describing on how to use the Selection And Visibility pane: