Outlining
Home Up Numbering Track Changes Outlining

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Users Guide
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Flying Pillcrow - trademark of Madison Wisconsin Criminal Defense Lawyer Charles Kenyon'n Word sites - symbolizing the wish to make Word fly!

 

 

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as part of my
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Outlining in Microsoft Word

This chapter is for use with Word 97 - Word 2013/365. Unlike many of the other chapters, it is not a collaboration but the work of a single author without peer review. It is not finished.

bulletBig Idea #1 - Use Styles with an Outline Level Set
bulletBig Idea #2 - Use Built-In Heading Styles Rather Than Create Your Own
bulletBig Idea #3 - If You Want Outline Numbering or Even Different Levels of Lists stay away from the buttons!
bulletBig Idea #4 - Use Outline View
bulletBig Idea #5 - Use the Navigation Pane in Word 2010 and later

Big Idea #1 - Use Styles with an Outline Level Set

See Understanding Styles in Microsoft Word

You want to use a paragraph style that has an outline level set.

Word 1997 - 2003

Format > Style > New Style > Format > Paragraph > Outline Level

Word 2007 - 2013

Home Tab > Styles Pane > New Style (button) > Format > Paragraph > Outline Level

You could apply this outline level formatting through direct paragraph formatting, but why would you want to? This is what styles are for!

 

Big Idea #2 - Use Built-In Heading Styles Rather Than Create Your Own

See Why use Microsoft Word’s built-in heading styles? by Shauna Kelly

The Built-In Heading styles already have outline numbering levels assigned. They also have special properties that make other Word features work better. The first three levels even have built-in keyboard shortcuts (Ctrl+Alt+1, Ctrl+Alt+2, Ctrl+Alt+3). You can even have shortcuts for all nine levels if you want.

You can modify these styles to have any appearance you want.

Big Idea #3 - If You Want Outline Numbering or Even Different Levels of Lists

Do not just press a button or choose numbering format. This is almost always a mistake. Instead set up your styles by attaching them to a numbering list using the procedures outlined by Shauna Kelly:

bullet How to create numbered headings or outline numbering in Ribbon Versions of Word
bullet How to control bullets in Ribbon Versions of Word

This is the only known method of creating multi-level numbering/outlining/bullets that survives editing.

Big Idea #4 - Use Outline View

Outline View has been available since at least Word 97 and continues in the Ribbon Versions of Word. It not only changes the view but gives quick access to Outlining controls. These allow collapsing Outline levels, promoting and demoting paragraphs and other helpful methods. Leave the Master Document controls alone!

In Word 97-2003, you can access it under the View Menu, in later versions, under the View Tab.

Outline view lets you Collapse/Expand parts of your document quickly. You can select and copy/move entire parts of your document within Outline view.

You can print just the outline (collapsed/expanded as wished) by using the Quick Print button (Word 97-2003). For later versions of Word, you will need to add the button to the Quick Access Toolbar (QAT) as outlined by Suzanne Barnhill in this Answers Thread.

Warning: The Outline View in versions of Word after Word 97 has given access to the "Master Document features" of Word. These are dangerous and can destroy your work. See Master Documents before touching these "features."

Big Idea #5 - Use the Navigation Pane in Word 2010 and later

Word 2010 introduced the Navigation Pane. Documents organized using Outline-Level headings and structure can be viewed and manipulated. Do not confuse this with the Document Map in earlier versions of Word, which should not be used.

See also: Navigation Pane in Word 2010 and later.

 

Note: The idea of labeling of sections as "big ideas" was stolen directly from Bill Coan's article on page numbering.

This page last edited by Charles Kenyon on Monday 18 September 2017

 

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