Section Breaks allow for formatting to be changed between pages or columns in word. This can be useful to change the page numbering type (between Roman and Arabic numerals for example) or changing a pages orientation to landscape between portrait pages.
|Break Type||When to use|
|Page breaks should be used to separate pages that will have the same formatting as the pages before. These will move content to the top of a new page. Example: to end one chapter and begin a new one|
|Column breaks allow for multiple columns of text to be created on one page, much like a table does, and are used to indicate where one column should end and the next should begin.|
|Section break (next page) will allow you to alter the formatting between two sections including how pages are numbered, orientation of pages, etc. This should be used anywhere that major formatting needs to change.|
Nonprinting characters or formatting marks can be helpful while formatting your document. They show things like page breaks and tabs.
|This indicates a tab. Tabs can be used to indent text or objects.|
|Spaces are shown by little dots. Each dot is one space.|
|Hard returns are often used to signify the end of a paragraph. These are made by pressing enter / return. Hard returns restore formatting to the default text.|
|Soft returns are used to signify the end of a line. These are made by holding shift while pressing enter / return. Soft returns maintain any formatting work done between lines. This is helpful for formatting CHAPTER headings or table titles.|
|Page breaks add a new page and force all content typed after it to start on a new page rather than continuing on the previous page. These maintain formatting between pages and should be used at the end of chapters to start the next chapter.|
|There are several types of section breaks. The Section Break (Next Page), shown here, allows formatting to change between pages. This helps change the page numbers between the front matter and the body of the document or allows landscape pages to be inserted between portrait pages.|
The rulers show the margins of the document, indentation settings, etc.
Ruler settings can be found under the VIEW tab. Select ruler to turn on or off.
The reference / bibliography / works cited page should be formatted to have a hanging indent. This means the top line is flush left with the margin and that any subsequent lines for the reference entry are indented 0.5". To do so, click on the bottom tab and drag it to the right.
The grayed areas on the rulers indicate the margins. Any content below the grayed areas are in the margins and outside of the content area and will need to be moved.
Most of this guide uses Microsoft Word on Windows to show examples. One of the main formatting differences on a Mac is the location of Dialog Boxes. Dialog boxes are windows that open with additional menu items. These can be located throughout the ribbon at the top of the document:
Mac users should use the "Format" menu located at the top to the appropriate dialog boxes: