Using Prezi - The Online Presentation Software Tool

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A user-friendly, step-by-step introductory guide to using Prezi, a web-based presentation application program ideal for engaging your audience with this book and ebook

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by Dr. Minerva M. Ladores | July 2013 | Open Source

In this article by Dr. Minerva M. Ladores, author of Instant Prezi Starter[Instant], we will see how to use the Prezi software for preparing unique and creative presentations. Prezi is a presentation software tool for presenting ideas on virtual canvas. It employs a user interface which allows users to zoom in and out of their presentation media.

(For more resources related to this topic, see here.)

So, what is Prezi?

Prezi is a web-based presentation tool. It has awesome features you can use to create compelling, attention-grabbing, and memorable presentations. We will get to the cool features later. First, let me talk about it being a web-based presentation tool. By "web-based," I mean that you create your presentations online using this application program. You create presentations online, present it from the web, and have a link through which your audience can access it later. You can also use Prezi as a collaboration tool by sharing your Prezi and allowing members of your group to edit the presentation with you in real time. During a Prezi meeting, up to 10 members of your group can make changes on a Prezi as you brainstorm your ideas or discuss your points. So, while it is largely a presentation tool, Prezi can also function as a tool for brainstorming and discussion. This is possible because of the way Prezi has been laid out and the various flowcharts you can build to illustrate your points. In this sense, Prezi also functions as a mind mapping tool.

So, Prezi is an online presentation tool that you can also use for brainstorming, mind mapping, and real-time collaboration. It comes with features that you can harness to create highly visual and engaging presentations.

Now, there are several presentation tools online, but Prezi is different. Working with most slideshow presentations is like working with a stack of index cards or poster boards. We add text and illustrations on each card, then we present our cards one at a time.

First you view the first slide, then the second, and so on, as shown in the following diagram:

In slideshow presentations, information is presented one slide at a time

Similar to slideshow presentation tools, you use Prezi to present your ideas by adding text and illustrations on a given space. What makes Prezi awesome, however, are the panning and zooming features you should use to make a greater impact on your audience.

When it comes to making a presentation using Prezi, imagine yourself in front of a huge white board the size of a wall. You begin by typing text and illustrations on this board. In Prezi, this is referred to as the canvas.

It is like having an exhibit, but you would want to guide your viewers' eyes through the texts and illustrations you have placed on your canvas. Which one should they look at first? Next? So, you add numbers to each item. This will be the path your viewers' eyes would take as they travel from one element to another, as shown in the following diagram:

In Prezi, you guide your viewer's eyes by adding a numbered path

Now imagine you have a video camera. Imagine viewing your whiteboard and focusing on the first item, then moving the video (without turning it off) to view the second item. In Prezi, a similar panning movement occurs as you move from one frame to the next following the path you have indicated, as shown in the following diagram:

A Prezi presentation is like viewing your presentation through a video camera, as it pans across the canvas and
zooming into focus points at certain time

This sense of movement created by panning makes the presentation eye-catching. The motion produced helps to keep your viewer's attention as you move from one item on your presentation to the next. Imagine if, given the preceding diagram, we pan 1-2-4-3 instead of 1-2-3-4. Can you imagine how different that would be? Or how about if we were to place the elements in a straight row? Will it be as attractive? Think of the many different ways you can be creative with this Prezi feature!


Prezi is a web-based tool, and it is best to work on it online. You can get started in four easy steps as follows:

  1. Go to

  2. Click on Sign Up Now located in the middle of the screen, or Sign Up located in the upper right-hand corner.

  3. Choose one of the following options for a Prezi license:

    • Public: This is free. You will have 100 MB of storage, which is enough for a few presentations. You can edit and share the Prezi presentations you create. Your presentations will be public.

    • Enjoy: For a fee, you will have 500 MB of storage. On top of that, you have the option to make your presentations private and use your own logo. Subscribers also get premium customer support where you can get answers within one day.

    • Pro: If you upgrade to a Pro license, you'll get 2 GB of storage. In addition to having the option to have private presentations and using your own logo, you will also be able to download Prezi Desktop. You use Prezi Desktop to work offline securely.

    • Student and Teacher Licenses: You can register for an Enjoy Edu license for free if your school has an official website. Use a school e-mail account when signing up. You can create private presentations, use your own logo, and have 500 MB of storage space. If you want the ability to work offline or need more space, you can upgrade to a Pro Edu license for a fee.

    Decide which option is most appropriate for you and then click on the button that says Try Now. Follow the prompts for signing up. You will be asked for your name, e-mail address, and a password. It may be a good idea for you to write down the e-mail and password you used before you forget. You should also check the box signifying that you agree to Prezi's terms of use.

    If you have a Facebook account, you might like to log in using your Facebook account information. Just click on Log in with Facebook.

  4. Once you have signed up, you can log in and use Prezi any time you wish by going to and putting in your e-mail address and password. And that's it! Now you're ready to create your first Prezi!


In this article we saw what is Prezi, its uses, and installation.

Resources for Article :

Further resources on this subject:

Instant Prezi Starter [Instant] A user-friendly, step-by-step introductory guide to using Prezi, a web-based presentation application program ideal for engaging your audience with this book and ebook
Published: June 2013
eBook Price: $9.99
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About the Author :

Dr. Minerva M. Ladores

Dr. Minerva M. Ladores has 20 years of teaching experience in early childhood and higher education. She has taught online and face-to-face courses on instructional technology, educational foundations, early childhood education, and cultural differences – both graduate and undergraduate levels - at Frostburg State University, University of Cincinnati, and University of the Philippines. She has presented at national and international conferences on the topics of educational technology and cultural diversity. Her current interests are online learning, instructional uses of mobile devices, and integrating Web 2.0 tools (such as Prezi) in teaching.

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