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Microsoft Word 2010 and 2013: Working With Styles

This guide is based on a similar guide from the University of Michigan Libraries. See attribution box at the bottom of the page for more information.

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Use the drop down menu under the Insertions in the Working With Styles tab or the links above to navigate the pages to working with and augmenting various styles in your Word document.

Working with Styles

Your dissertation is likely to have a few different categories of text that need to appear differently including:

  • body text (the words in each paragraph)
  • headings and subheadings
  • chapter titles
  • blocked-off quotes
  • and more.

For example, you can specify that all of the quotes in your document to be single-spaced and indented by .5” on either side.  You can specify that you want your primary headings to be centered and bold, and your subheadings should be left aligned and italicized.  Rather than formatting each heading or quote one-by-one throughout your entire document, you can use styles to specify what each category of text should look like, and then label your text as “heading” or “subheading” or “quote” as needed.

These “categories” are called styles in Word. Styles define the appearance of text elements throughout your document. In particular, applying the heading styles identifies text that can be used to automatically generate a table of contents. Styles also allow for quick changes throughout your document – if you change the font of a heading style, for example, any text identified with that heading will then be changed throughout the document.

To see a list of the predefined styles in Word, look at the Styles Group in the Home Ribbon.

View this video to get started and then visit the pages in the drop down menu to receive written instructions.

Attribution and Thanks

The information provided in this guide is based upon a guide created by the University of Michigan Libraries.  They have graciously made their guide available under a Creative Commons License 4.0.  Please click the link to visit the UofM original.