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Microsoft Word 2007
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Microsoft Word 2007 - Paragraphs

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Learn how Microsoft Word 2007 paragraphs work. Also, learn how to change the indent, line spacing and case of your text.

Word Office Helper What's on this page...
Using Indent Buttons
Indent Precisely
Changing Line Spacing
Changing Case

Using Indent Buttons

An indent is the blank space left between the margin and the beginning of a line or row of text, NOT the left side of the page and the text.

Word 2007 offers a handful of different ways to change the indentation of paragraphs.

The fastest way to indent a paragraph is to use the Increase Indent and Decrease Indent buttons on the Home Ribbon tab to move the paragraph away from or toward to, the left margin.

Microsoft Word 2007: Indent buttons

To increase or decrease the indent of a paragraph, follow these steps:

1. Click in the paragraph whose indentation you want to change. If you want to change more than one paragraph, select them.
2. Click one of Indent buttons as many times as necessary to indent the text:
  Increase Indent button:
Indents the paragraph from the left margin by one tab stop.

Microsoft Word Help: decrease indent button Increase Indent button


Press CTRL + M
  Decrease Indent button:
Moves the paragraph back toward the left margin by one tab stop.

Microsoft Word Help: increase indent button Decrease Indent button


Press CTRL + SHIFT + M.

You can also change the indentations by using the ruler to eyeball it.

This technique requires some dexterity with the mouse, but it allows you to see precisely where paragraphs and the first lines of paragraphs are indented.

To indent paragraphs by using the ruler, follow these steps:

1. If your ruler doesn't show, click the View Ribbon tab ► Ruler, if necessary, to put the ruler on-screen.
2. Select the paragraph or paragraphs whose indentation you want to change.
3. Click-and-drag along the ruler, any of the following indent markers with the mouse:
  First-Line Indent Marker:
Drag the down-pointing arrow on the ruler to indent the first line of the paragraph only.
  Left Indent Marker:
This one comes in two parts:
  A top triangle-marker (first-line indent marker)
  A bottom triangle-marker (hanging indent marker)
  A square-marker (left indent marker)

Drag the arrow that points up (called the hanging indent marker), but not the box underneath it, to move the left margin independently of the first-line indentation.  To move the left indentation and the first-line indentation relative to the left margin, slide the box.

Doing so moves everything on the left side of the ruler.
  Right Indent Marker:
Drag this one to move the right side of the paragraph away from the right margin.
Microsoft Word Help: indent marker layout on horizontal ruler

Word Office Helper
If you find it difficult to get hold of the correct indent marker on the ruler, use the indent marker tabs on the Tabs button to the left of the Horizontal ruler.

Microsoft Word Help: first line indent marker First Line Indent marker       Microsoft Word Help: hanging indent marker Hanging Indent marker

Every time you click on the Tab Stop button,
it cycles through the different tab stops,
the last two of them are the "First Line Indent"
and "Hanging Indent" markers.

Get the correct marker and click on the ruler, it's new position.

This way you can easily choose the new position for the indent.
Back to Top
Indent Buttons  |  Paragraph Dialog Box  |  Line Spacing  |  Change Case
Return to Microsoft Word 2007 from Microsoft Word 2007 - Paragraphs
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