Format Your MS 2007 Word Document in a Snap with Styles

Did you know you can apply formatting to text in MS Word without highlighting and manually selecting type attributes? You may be accustomed to highlighting text and clicking buttons to to re-format every paragraph, heading, subheading and so on. In a long document, this process is repetitive, time-consuming, and subject to errors. Using the Microsoft Office Word 2007 Quick Styles, applying type specifications is as easy as clicking a button in the Quick Styles Gallery.

Let’s see how…

What Are Styles?

A style is effectively a button that contains predefined settings such as font, type size, alignment, line spacing, and color.

You can make your own styles or use predefined styles. In many cases, if you want to format a whole paragraph with a style, you only need to click in the paragraph and then click the chosen style button.

With Styles, you can save loads of time and keep your document consistent. Once you have formatted your document with Styles, you can quickly make changes across the entire document by simply redefining a style. In addition, Microsoft Word 2007 has a feature called Quick Style Sets that allows you to apply changes to multiple styles across the entire document.

In a single click, you can go from this:
Styles Not Set
to this:
Styles Are Set

How to Apply Styles

All newly typed documents begin with a style of Normal. Assign styles to paragraphs or subheads in your document in the following way:

  1. Press and drag to select the text you want to format with a style.
  2. On the Home tab Home Tab, in the Styles group, click a style that you want:Styles Group
    Note: Some of the Quick Style buttons have a Paragraph iconStyle Icon. This means that the style will affect the entire paragraph. It also means that to apply these paragraph styles, you can place the insertion point anywhere in the paragraph rather than selecting the entire paragraph.

    • You can see how selected text will look with a particular style by placing your pointer over the style that you want to preview.
    • If you don’t see the style that you want, click the More button MS More Button to expand the Quick Styles gallery.
    • You can open even more styles in a separate dialog box by clicking the Styles Dialog Box Launcher button  in the Styles group (Alt-Ctrl-Shift-S). You see a long list from which to choose:
    More Styles button

    Note: The styles in the Styles Dialog Box do not offer a preview in the document itself, but when you point to them, you see a tool tip that informs you of their formatting attributes.

  3. Repeat step 1 and 2 for paragraphs and passages of text throughout the document.

Once you have done this, you can “try on a new look”—including colors and shading—for all paragraphs and sections using Quick Style Sets.

How to Apply Quick Style Sets

A Quick Style Set includes predesigned styles that include headings, body text, titles, etc., that work together in various colors and formats to create a professional looking document. Quick Style Sets use your styles to quickly change the look thoughout your entire document.

If you have already assigned styles within your document, you will see colors, shading, and borders appear in the preview. (Note: If you have not yet assigned styles to text, Quick Styles Sets will change the font face, spacing, and margins throughout—but don’t add the more striking and colorful effects until some styles are present.)

To apply Quick Style Sets:

  1. Click anywhere in the document.
  2. To preview your entire document with a new set of specifications for all the styles:
    On the Home tab, in the Styles group, click Change Styles Change Styles Button.
    Point to Style Set, and simply point to the choices on the list.
  3. When you have chosen one, click the Style Set.

Your document has been reformatted throughout.

Tips for customizing:

If you want to change a style and make a new one of your own:

  1. Select the text to be changed.
  2. Make the new specifications on the Home Tab.
  3. Right-click the Selected text, point to Styles, click Save Selection as a New Quick Style…
  4. Name the new style.

The newly created custom Quick Style now appears in the Quick Style Gallery.

  • To reformat a whole paragraph with the new style, click once in the paragraph and and click the named Quick Style button.
  • To reformat a section of text with the new style, highlight a section of text and click the named Quick Style button to reformat just the section.


  1. Milton Chaves de Almeida

    Hi, Ms. Carol:

    Thanks for posting tips online.

    Do you happen to know how to select a page range (all of the ones in
    between, say, page 300 to 366) on a Microsoft Word document using
    hotkeys? Is this possible? Or only by creating a special macro?

    Thanks for your attention.



  2. Carol Rhodes

    Couldn’t find any hot keys per se but here are some suggestions:

    When you press F8, and click in the document, everything to that point from cursor is selected. If you press it twice, the entire document is selected.
    Esc key turns it off.

    Shift + Page Down – will select pages as you proceed through doc

    Click at beginning of first page (page 300) and scroll using scroll bar – Shift + Click at end of selection (page 366) to select everything in between

    Shift + Up or Shift + Down arrow keys will select or deselect as well.

    Hope this helps!


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