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Microsoft Word 2008

Style Options

Using style options can help to ease your workload and help improve consistency within and across documents. With these options, you can format with styles automatically, create a style based on an existing style, apply a new style to a paragraph, and display or hide style names. For more information about styles, refer to Styles: An Overview and Style Basics.

return to topCreating a Style Based on an Existing Style

You may need a group of styles that are similar to each other but have slight variations. You can create a "family" of styles based on one foundation style.

  1. From the Format menu, select Style...
    The Style dialog box appears.

  2. Click NEW...
    The New Style dialog box appears.
    New Style dialog box

  3. In the Name text box, type a name for the new style
    NOTE: All names are case sensitive, so be sure to type it in exactly as you want it.

  4. To create a character style, from the Style type pull-down list, select Character
    To create a paragraph style, from the Style type pull-down list, select Paragraph

  5. From the Style based on pull-down list, select an existing style to base the new style on
    NOTE: To create a completely new style, select (no style).

  6. OPTIONAL: To make additional formatting selections,
    1. From the Format pull-down list, select the attribute you want to change
      A dialog box appears corresponding to the attribute you chose.
      EXAMPLE: Font dialog box, Borders and Shading dialog box.
    2. Complete the corresponding dialog box
    3. Click OK
      To do more formatting, repeat steps a-c.

  7. Click OK

  8. Click CLOSE

return to topApplying the Next Style to a Paragraph

Often a paragraph formatted with a particular style is routinely followed by a paragraph with another specific style. When you press [return] to end the first paragraph, Word can apply a specific style to the following paragraph. For example, headings are usually followed by Normal text.

  1. From the Format menu, select Style...
    The Style dialog box appears.

  2. From the Styles scroll list, select the style for which you are setting a following paragraph style

  3. Click MODIFY...
    The Modify Style dialog box appears.

  4. From the Style for following paragraph pull-down list, select the style you want to apply to paragraphs which follow the style selected in step #2

  5. Click OK

  6. Click CLOSE

return to topDisplaying or Hiding Style Names

To see which paragraph styles are applied to text, you can display style names at the left side of the document window. Word displays the style names in Draft and Print Layout view only.

  1. From the View menu, select Draft or Print Layout

  2. If the style names are not displayed,
    1. From the Word menu, select Preferences…
      The Preferences dialog box appears.
    2. From the Authoring and Proofing Tools section, select View
      The View dialog box expands.
    3. To display style names, from the Window section, in the Style area width text box, type 1"
      To hide style names, from the Window section, in the Style area width text box, type 0"
      HINT: You can also hide the style area by dragging the style area boundary to the left until the style names are no longer visible. You must be in your document in Draft or Print Layout view to hide the style area in this manner.
    4. Click OK

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