Determine The Current ActiveShape In PowerPoint With VBA

By Chris Newman •  Updated: 02/19/15 •  4 min read
Determine The Current ActiveShape In Microsoft PowerPoint With VBA

What This VBA Code Does

This code will set a variable named ActiveShape to equal the shape that is currently selected by the user.  If multiple shapes are selected, the code will default the variable to equal the shape that was clicked on first.  I use this methodology often while writing macros to analyze characteristics of a shape within my PowerPoint slide.

Sub DetermineActiveShape()
'PURPOSE: Determine the currently selected shape in PowerPoint
'SOURCE: www.TheSpreadsheetGuru.com/the-code-vault

Dim ActiveShape As Shape
Dim shp As Shape

'Determine Which Shape is Active
  If ActiveWindow.Selection.Type = ppSelectionShapes Then
    'Loop in case multiples shapes selected
       For Each shp In ActiveWindow.Selection.ShapeRange
         'ActiveShape is first shape selected
            Set ActiveShape = shp
            Exit For
       Next shp
    MsgBox "There is no shape currently selected!", vbExclamation, "No Shape Found"
  End If

'Do Something with the ActiveShape
  ActiveShape.TextFrame2.TextRange.Text = "Hello!"

End Sub

Using VBA Code Found On The Internet

Now that you’ve found some VBA code that could potentially solve your Excel automation problem, what do you do with it? If you don’t necessarily want to learn how to code VBA and are just looking for the fastest way to implement this code into your spreadsheet, I wrote an article (with video) that explains how to get the VBA code you’ve found running on your spreadsheet.

Getting Started Automating Excel

Are you new to VBA and not sure where to begin? Check out my quickstart guide to learning VBA. This article won’t overwhelm you with fancy coding jargon, as it provides you with a simplistic and straightforward approach to the basic things I wish I knew when trying to teach myself how to automate tasks in Excel with VBA Macros.

Also, if you haven’t checked out Excel’s latest automation feature called Power Query, I have put together a beginner’s guide for automating with Excel’s Power Query feature as well! This little-known built-in Excel feature allows you to merge and clean data automatically with little to no coding!

How Do I Modify This To Fit My Specific Needs?

Chances are this post did not give you the exact answer you were looking for. We all have different situations and it's impossible to account for every particular need one might have. That's why I want to share with you: My Guide to Getting the Solution to your Problems FAST! In this article, I explain the best strategies I have come up with over the years to get quick answers to complex problems in Excel, PowerPoint, VBA, you name it

I highly recommend that you check this guide out before asking me or anyone else in the comments section to solve your specific problem. I can guarantee that 9 times out of 10, one of my strategies will get you the answer(s) you are needing faster than it will take me to get back to you with a possible solution. I try my best to help everyone out, but sometimes I don't have time to fit everyone's questions in (there never seem to be quite enough hours in the day!).

I wish you the best of luck and I hope this tutorial gets you heading in the right direction!

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Chris Newman

Chris Newman

Chris is a finance professional and Excel MVP recognized by Microsoft since 2016. With his expertise, he founded TheSpreadsheetGuru blog to help fellow Excel users, where he shares his vast creative solutions & expertise. In addition, he has developed over 7 widely-used Excel Add-ins that have been embraced by individuals and companies worldwide.