Tag Archives: ruler

Instructions How to Format in Microsoft Word – 5

The Ruler Bar

Now that you have prepared your toolbar(s), you can start working in your document. The ruler is an effective way to perform special formatting in a paragraph.


You can create tabs by single left mouse clicking into the ruler bar. If you click on icon 1, it will change the alignment of how text lines up under subsequent tab stops that you single click into the ruler bar. To remove a tabstop, click on it and drag it off the ruler bar. Or drag it to the left or right to change its position.

Alternatively, you can double click into the ruler bar and it will open up the below window (this is after I had already custom created two tab stops for the paragraph I was in).

ms-word-formatting-instructions-translation-jobs-work_image020To modify each stop, you need to select it first in the top left box, as I have done for the second and last tab stop above (12.06 cm). Click into the box where is shown 12.06 cm and you can manually change the number to something else (such as 13.06 cm).

The Alignment section dictates how the text will align around the tab stop, while the Leader section adds dots or dashes etc. before the text, starting from the previous tab stop. Such as:


In this example I set the first tabstop to right alignment with preceding dashes, while the second tabstop is center-aligned with a preceding underline.

  • Jump to the next tab stop within a paragraph by pressing TAB.
  • Point “2” in the picture at the top of this section indicates where a paragraph will start (indent).
  • Point “3” indicates where the paragraph will continue (indented) once it comes to the end of the line (the default shortcut shift+Enter line break will jump to next line but indented as the hanging indent).
  • Point “4” drags points “1” and “2” simultaneously.
  • Point “5” indicates where the paragraph will end before automatically dropping down to the next line (to where point “2” was set for example).
  • Point “6” is a tab stop (left aligned in this case – the standard default).

You can also move points “1”, “2” or both using short-cut keys, such as CTRL T to move point “2” to the right, CTRL SHIFT T to move point “2” to the left, CTRL M to move both points “1” and “2” to the right and CTRL SHIFT M to move both of these points to the left. In fact, the SHIFT key works as a minus in this and other ways throughout Windows. If you have tab stops set on your ruler, using these short-cut keys will jump points “1” and/or “2” to the next or previous tab stop <make embedded video to show this>. If there are no tab stops, these points will jump at a distance as determined in the default tab stop distance (set by accessing FORMAT > TABS or double clicking into the ruler bar).

Next – Paragraph Formatting

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