Sunday, 23 June 2013

TEXT ALIGNMENT - MS Word 2007 Tutorial

Author: Navin Kumar

Microsoft Word has capability for aligning text in paragraphs in four different ways – left alignment, right alignment, centre alignment and justified.

In this tutorial, you will learn how to align text in MS Word 2007 documents.

Task

Download the practice document “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” from the About Tutorials page and open it. In this document, right align the first paragraph, then left align it. Next, centre align second paragraph and finally, align text in fourth and fifth paragraphs fully justified on both sides.

Step-by-Step Instruction

Right Alignment
  1. Open the practice document “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”.
  2. Click anywhere in the first paragraph.
  3. Click the ‘Home’ tab on the Ribbon.
  4. Click ‘Align Text Right’ button in the Paragraph group (see Figure 1). MS Word makes the right side of the paragraph flush with right margin while the left side of the paragraph appears jagged as shown below:
Alice had sat on the bank by her sister till she was tired. Once or twice she had looked at the book her sister held in her hand, but there were no pictures in it, "and what is the use of a book," thought Alice, "without pictures?" She asked herself as well as she could, for the hot day made her feel quite dull, if it would be worthwhile to get up and pick some daisies to make a chain. Just then a white rabbit with pink eyes ran close by her.
Right alignment is used for page numbering, printing date on letters, etc. There are many scripts that are written from right to left. Obviously, right alignment is the preferred alignment in such cases.
Text Alignment buttons on Home Tab of Microsoft Word
Figure 1: Text Alignment Buttons on 'Home' Tab

Left Alignment
  1. Click anywhere in first paragraph.
  2. Click ‘Align Text Left’ button in the Paragraph group on Ribbon. The left side of the paragraph will become flush with left margin. Left side of each line starts at the left margin while the right side of the paragraph appears jagged as shown below:
Alice had sat on the bank by her sister till she was tired. Once or twice she had looked at the book her sister held in her hand, but there were no pictures in it, "and what is the use of a book," thought Alice, "without pictures?" She asked herself as well as she could, for the hot day made her feel quite dull, if it would be worthwhile to get up and pick some daisies to make a chain. Just then a white rabbit with pink eyes ran close by her.
By default, paragraphs of text in MS Word are left aligned. World over, left alignment is the most popular choice for paragraph alignment in English and many other languages.

Centre Alignment
  1. Click anywhere in the second paragraph.
  2. Click ‘Centre’ button in the Paragraph group on Ribbon. MS Word centres each line of paragraph text between left and right margins as shown below:
That was not such a strange thing, nor did Alice think it so much out of the way to hear the Rabbit say, "Oh dear! Oh, dear! I shall be late!" But when the Rabbit took a watch out of its pocket, and looked at it and then ran on, Alice started to her feet, for she knew that was the first time she had seen a Rabbit with a watch. She jumped up and ran to get a look at it, and was just in time to see it pop down a large rabbit hole near the hedge.
Centred text is usually used in Titles, Chapter headings, invitation cards, etc.

Justified
  1. Select fourth and fifth paragraphs.
  2. Click ‘Justify’ button in the Paragraph group on Ribbon. MS Word will line up both sides of the paragraph text flush with the margins. Each line begins at the left margin and ends at the right margin except the last line which is left aligned as shown below:
The hole went straight on for some way and then turned down with a sharp bend, so sharp that Alice had no time to think to stop till she found herself falling in what seemed a deep well. 
She must not have moved fast, or the well must have been quite deep, for it took her a long time to go down, and as she went she had time to look at the strange things she passed. First she tried to look down and make out what was there, but it was too dark to see; then she looked at the sides of the well and saw that they were piled with book-shelves; here and there she saw maps hung on pegs. She took down a jar from one of the shelves as she passed. On it was the word Jam, but there was no jam in it, so she put it back on one of the shelves as she fell past it.
Often used in newspapers and magazines, fully justified paragraph formatting makes the thin columns of text easier to read. It also gives a tidier appearance to the text. This is my preferred alignment.

TIP!
 
You can use the following keyboard shortcuts for text alignment in MS Word documents:
  • Left Alignment     Ctrl+L
  • Right Alignment     Ctrl+R
  • Centre Alignment     Ctrl+E
  • Justified        Ctrl+J

Recap

In a MS Word document, text of one or more paragraphs can be aligned by selecting the paragraphs and clicking on the alignment buttons in the ‘Font’ group of Home tab.

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To view a downloadable version of this tutorial, go to the MS Word 2007 Tutorials page
and click the link [W] against this tutorial.
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