The heading structure is one of the most important elements of accessibility. Headings structure the document và help the reader understand the organization and to find information they need. In Word, headings are mix by using “Styles.” This will ensure that assistive technology, lượt thích screen readers, will notify the listener of the header. It also allows for easier navigation & improves workflow.

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Headings Hierarchy

Every document needs a Heading 1. Use additional headings khổng lồ structure your document and make it navigable. The hierarchy structure for a document is something like this:

Heading 1 - page title or main content. There is usually only 1. Heading 2 - a major section heading. Heading 3 - a subsection heading of a major section. Heading 4 - a subsection of the Heading 3 subsection và so on through Heading 6.

Headings need lớn be in sequential order, don"t skip a heading.

Heading Order Example:

Heading 1 Heading 2 Heading 3 Heading 4 Heading 3 Heading 3 Heading 2 Heading 3

Adapted from Web
Aim Techniques for Word.

Heading Styles

Let"s start with the title of the document as it will be your Heading 1. To make the title a Heading:

Either click your cursor into, or select the Heading 1 Text (your title) On the home tab ribbon, in the style panel, select "Heading 1."


For subsequent headings:

Either click your cursor into, or select the Heading Text. On the trang chủ tab ribbon, select the Heading appropriate for that level. Remember not to lớn skip headings.


Personalizing the Heading Style

If you don"t lượt thích the font, the màu sắc or other aspects of the default heading style, no problem. You can modify the style. Update the font, font color, fonts size, space form size before and after & so much more.

Procedure lớn Modify the Style

Right click the style in the styles in the ribbon, or use the dropdown menu in the styles pane, và select Modify style.

Styles > Right Click > Modify
Style Pane > Dropdown


Change your font, color, size, etc. You can see how it will appear in the preview window.


Bonus: When you are in the habit of using styles for your headings, you can streamline your work.

You can save the styles to lớn be your default. In large documents with many headings, if you have used styles and need lớn change the style, modifying the style in the home ribbon will update it throughout your document. Tip

In a case where your heading is formatted already the way you want it, you can quickly update the heading lớn appear with that format.

Either click your cursor into, or select, the Heading that is formatted correctly. On the trang chủ tab ribbon, right click the Heading appropriate for that level. Select “Update lớn Match Selection”.


If you have indicated more Headings of that cấp độ in your document, they will all update to lớn that format.

Caution: bởi not use your enter/return key khổng lồ make more space either before or after your heading. See "Controling Space with Paragraph Editor" section below.

Using the Style Pane

With a large document, you may want to lớn use the Style Pane. In the style pane, use the dropdown arrow instead of right clicking for updating & modifying the style.

To open the Style Pane in Word for Windows

Look for the tiny arrow in the left bottom corner of the styles box on the trang chủ ribbon. This will open the style pane.


The style pane will open. At the bottom, click the "Options" button.


In the Style Pane Options Window, under "Select styles to lớn show," select "All Styles."


Click OK. Now, the pane stays open as you move about your document và update the styles by either modifying them or selecting and "Update to lớn Match Style."

To open Style Pane in Word for Mac

To access in Mac, click “Styles Pane,” next to lớn the styles panel or dropdown menu.


Toward the bottom of the Style Pane, use the dropdown menu for "Lists" & change from "Recommended" khổng lồ "All Styles."


Controling Space with Paragraph Editor

Sometimes you want more space between your paragraphs or between your heading & a paragraph. Bởi vì not use the enter/return key to lớn create empty spaces. This can be confusing for screenreaders. Instead, use the Paragraph editor.

Space can be applied lớn the style so that extra space is added to all instances of that style, or you can add it to lớn a single paragraph, header, etc.

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Modify the Style

To make consistent space between all of your Heading 2"s, for example, modify the Heading 2 style.

Right click the style in the styles in the ribbon, or use the dropdown menu in the styles pane, and select Modify style. In the bottom left corner, use the “Format” dropdown to lớn choose paragraph.

Styles > Right Click > Modify
Format > Paragraph


For just one Paragraph or Heading

To alter the spacing on one paragraph or heading, right click on the text and select Paragraph.

Right click in text > Paragraph


Changing the Spacing

On the “Indents and Spacing” tab of the Paragraph window, in the Spacing section, adjust the amount of space before and/or after you paragraph.

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Headings make text stand out & help people scan your document.

The simplest way to add headings is with heading styles. Using heading styles means you can also quickly build a table of contents, reorganize your document, and reformat its design without having to lớn manually change each heading"s text.

Select the text you want lớn use as a heading.

On the Home tab, move the pointer over different headings in the Styles gallery. Notice as you pause over each style, your text will change so you can see how it will look in your document. Click the heading style you want khổng lồ use.


If you don"t see the style that you want, click the More button

lớn expand the gallery.

Tip: You can change the font và formatting of a heading style. Just select the heading text you want to customize, modify its styles the way you want, & then on the Home tab, in the Styles group, right-click the heading style that you customized và click Update Heading lớn Match Selection. Every time you apply that heading style in your document, the heading style will include your customizations.

Styles can vày a lot more, including a table of contents. Here"s a short video clip on why khổng lồ write first & format later using Styles.


Headings can make text stand out & help people scan your document. The simplest way to địa chỉ headings is to use heading styles.

Select the text you want khổng lồ use as a heading.

On the Home tab, click the heading style you want to use.


If you don"t see the style you want, click a left, right, or down arrow lớn see more available styles.


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