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Microsoft Word 2008

Paragraph Formatting Options

This document will help you use paragraph formatting options to enhance your Word 2008 experience.

return to topChanging Paragraph Alignment

Changing text alignment, margins, and line spacing will affect the entire paragraph even if you have only a single word selected or the insertion point placed in the paragraph. To format multiple paragraphs, you need to select at least one character from each paragraph. You can align text with the right or left margins, center the text, or align the text with both margins.

Understanding Text Alignment

The following table will help you discern the difference between the four given alignments.

Button Name Image Description
Align Text Left Align Text Left button Adjusts text so it flows from left to right.
Align Center Align Center button Adjusts text so it flows outward from the center.
Align Text Right Align Text Right button Adjusts text so it flows from right to left.
Justify Justify button Adjusts text so it flows evenly throughout the page.

 

Changing Text Alignment

  1. Place your insertion point anywhere in the desired paragraph

  2. To open the Formatting Palette, on the ribbon, click TOOLBOXToolbox button
    The Toolbox pane appears displaying the Formatting Palette.
    Toolbox pane: Formatting Palatte

  3. If the Alignment and Spacing options do not display, select Alignment and Spacing

  4. In the Horizontal section, click the desired text alignment
    The text aligns accordingly.

return to topAdjusting Line Spacing

You can add space between lines within a paragraph by adjusting the line spacing. For example, you may want your text double-spaced. This is an efficient way of adding white space.

Understanding Line Spacing

The following table will help you discern the difference between the three given line spacing options.

Button Name Image Description
Single Space Single Space button Restores vertical spacing to its original size.
1.5 Space 1.5 Space button Adjusts vertical spacing to one and a half times its original size.
Double Space Double Space button Adjusts vertical spacing to twice its original size.

 

Adjusting Line Spacing

  1. Place your insertion point anywhere in the desired paragraph

  2. To open the Formatting Palette, on the ribbon, click TOOLBOXToolbox button
    The Toolbox pane appears displaying the Formatting Palette.
    Toolbox pane: Formatting Palatte

  3. If the Alignment and Spacing options do not display, select Alignment and Spacing

  4. In the Line spacing section, click the desired vertical width button

return to topAdjusting Paragraph Spacing

Rather than adding extra returns at the end of paragraphs, additional spaces before and after paragraphs can be added automatically with paragraph spacing.

  1. Place your insertion point anywhere in the desired paragraph

  2. To open the Formatting Palette, on the ribbon, click TOOLBOXToolbox button
    The Toolbox pane appears displaying the Formatting Palette.
    Toolbox pane: Formatting Palatte

  3. If the Alignment and Spacing options do not display, select Alignment and Spacing

  4. To change the amount of space before a paragraph begins, in the Paragraph Spacing (pt) section, in the Before text box, type the desired space
    OR
    To select the desired spacing, use the nudge buttonsNudge buttons

  5. To change the amount of space after a paragraph ends, in the Paragraph Spacing (pt) section, in the After text box, type the desired space
    OR
    To select the desired spacing, use the nudge buttonsNudge buttons

return to topWorking with Indents

Rather than tabbing in the first line of every paragraph, or tabbing in every line of a paragraph, you can create an automatic indent.

Working with Indents: Understanding the Ruler

The following image and descriptions provide information on how to use the ruler to adjust indentation.

Ruler

First Line Indent
Adjusts the left indentation of the initial line in a paragraph

Left Indent
Adjusts the full left indentation of the paragraph

Indent Box
Adjusts the First Line Indent button and Left Indent button simultaneously

Right Indent
Adjusts the full right indentation of the paragraph

 

Working with Indents: Ruler Option

  1. Place your insertion point anywhere in the desired paragraph

  2. To adjust the first line indent, on the ruler, click and drag the FIRST LINE INDENT slider to the desired width

  3. To adjust the left indent, on the ruler, click and drag the LEFT INDENT slider to the desired width

  4. To adjust the right indent, on the ruler, click and drag the RIGHT INDENT slider to the desired width

Working with Indents: Formatting Palette Option

  1. Place your insertion point anywhere in the desired paragraph

  2. To open the Formatting Palette, on the ribbon, click TOOLBOXToolbox button
    The Toolbox pane appears displaying the Formatting Palette.
    Toolbox pane: Formatting Palatte

  3. If the Alignment and Spacing options do not display, select Alignment and Spacing

  4. To adjust the left indent, in the Indentation (in) section, in the Left text box, type the desired indent width
    OR
    To select the desired indentation, use the nudge buttonsNudge buttons

  5. To adjust the right indent, in the Indentation (in) section, in the Right text box, type the desired indent width
    OR
    To select the desired indentation, use the nudge buttonsNudge buttons

  6. To adjust the first line indent, in the Indentation (in) section, in the First text box, type the desired indent width
    OR
    To select the desired indentation, use the nudge buttonsNudge buttons

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