Microsoft Word: Understanding Font and Paragraph Formatting

What It Is: The smallest “unit” that character formatting can be applied to is one character (letter, number, space or other). This means a line of text could have a different style of font formatting for every single letter and number including spaces although this isn’t likely or recommended.

To apply font formatting, choose formatting options from the Home tab in the Ribbon (Font group). You can also access the Paragraph dialog box directly from the Ribbon or from the shortcut menu (right-click on selected text). A selection of common formatting actions are on the Mini Toolbar which is also available when you right-click on a selection. A wide range of keyboard shortcuts can be used to apply formatting. For example, press [Ctrl] + B for bold.

How Word Works with Font Formatting

How Word Works:Word doesn’t have a beginning and ending code or instruction for character formatting. An enhancement such as bold or italics is either turned on or off for each individual character which can be easily visible from the Home tab of the Ribbon or in the Formatting toolbar. To remove an existing character formatting choice, just select the affected text and make the change (turn off bold, change font size, etc).

Has this happened to you? While editing a Word document, you move between two words and start typing only to see a different style of formatting than the surrounding text. Your new text is taking on the appearance of the formatting stored in the space between the words which may be different depending on the way the format was first applied. Remember every single character stores its own formatting.

What It Is: the smallest “unit” that paragraph formatting can be applied to is one paragraph. A paragraph is defined by a paragraph mark at the end of the text. Paragraph marks are created whenever a hard return is created and are visible when the Show/Hide icon or button is turned on. Tip: to turn on or off the display of non-printing characters (Show/Hide) including paragraph marks, press [Ctrl] + * or click on the paragraph mark (backwards P) on the Home tab of the Ribbon.

To apply paragraph formatting in Word, choose formatting options from the Home tab in the Ribbon (Paragraph and Style groups). You can also access the Paragraph dialog boxes directly from the Ribbon or from the shortcut menu (right-click on selected text). A selection of common formatting actions are on the Mini Toolbar which is also available when you right-click on a selection. A wide range of keyboard shortcuts can be used to apply formatting. For example, press [Ctrl] + 2 for double-spaced text.

How Word Works with Paragraph Formatting

How Word Works: Paragraph formatting instructions are not stored in a code at the beginning of a paragraph, but are stored in the paragraph mark at the end of each paragraph. If you delete a Microsoft office free download for windows 10 paragraph mark between two paragraphs, the paragraphs will merge and take on the formatting of the first.

Any changes to the paragraph formatting of existing text will only affect the paragraph where the insertion point (cursor) is currently positioned or paragraphs that are at least partially selected. For typing new text, just make the formatting choices you want and begin typing.

Advantages: Once paragraph formatting is set up, just press [Enter] and all paragraph formatting (as well as current font formatting) will be “copied” forward to the next paragraph. This means any formatting such as indents, bullets, tabs, and alignment does not have to be turned on for each new paragraph.

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