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Paragraph indentation determines the amount of space between a paragraph's text and the document margin. By default, paragraph indentation is set at the left and right margins for all lines but you could change it if you need to. One way to set paragraph indentation is with the ruler. If the ruler isn't showing in your document you could display it by choosing View > Ruler. You should see a checkmark next to it if it's displayed. Now, it's already here. You could see it at the top of the document. We'll start by reviewing a document with indentation already set and then we'll set indentation in the sample document.
So, what I am going to do is I'll position the insertion point in each paragraph and then you can look in the ruler to see how the indentation markers are set. This first paragraph doesn't have any special indentation setting. If you look at the ruler you could see that there are three indentation markers, this upper one, lower one, and the one on the side here and they're all set exactly at the margin. The margins where the blue ends and the gray begin. So blue here and gray here. The next example, I'll click in that, has one half inch indentation on the first line only.
Now, look at the way the indentation markers are set up here on the ruler. The top marker on the left is shifted a half an inch. Now, watch what happens when I drag this. You see how the text moves. The top marker corresponds to the first line of text. This next example has a hanging indent. Notice that the bottom marker on the left is positioned a half inch in from the left side. Remember the top marker is the first line of text. The bottom marker is the remaining lines of text.
I can drag either marker to change the way this looks. So, if I drag this one, it moves the top line. If I drag this one here, it removes the remaining lines. The next example here is the same but it uses a bullet character and a tab. You could see the tab, the bullet character right here. Word automatically creates a tab stop at the position of the indentation marker. So if I type in the bullet and I press Tab it'll automatically move me out to this indent. In the last example, both the left and right indentations are set.
You could see that right up here. All of these markers are set and this marker is set as well. I can drag either one in or out to change it. Same thing on this side. If I drag the bottom marker it'll move all of them. If I drag the top marker it will just move the top one. If I drag the middle one to grab it, right, I got just a hanging indent marker. I want to point out that sometimes it's tough to grab just the right marker here, especially if you using a trackpad. If you grab the wrong one, for example maybe I'm trying to grab the middle one and I missed it, I got the bottom one, I could always move the top one out.
It's a lot easier to grab the top one sometimes than the middle one. Now, let's make some changes in our sample document. I am going to close this, not save changes, and I got the sample document open here. First thing we want to do is indent the first line of each paragraph by a quarter inch. So I am going to select the paragraphs of text, right down to here, and I'm going to drag the top marker in a quarter inch, so right around there. All the selected paragraphs get indented.
Next, we are going to use indentation instead of justification for the signature area. Instead of having it right aligned, we are going to have it indented. So I want to select all that, bring it back to left aligned, and then with these paragraphs still selected what I want to do is I want to grab this left indent marker, the bottom one, and drag it and they should all move together and I'll bring it into about three and see how that looks. Now, there are two more buttons on the ribbon that you might find useful, the Decrease Indent and the Increase Indent buttons.
You can find those two right up here. So, if I decide and wanted it maybe a little more to the left I can decrease the indent and that shifts it over half an inch of time to the left. Or maybe I want it more. I can click this button here and then I'll indent it more this way. That's a little bit too much because I got a little word wrap going on here, which I don't want. So, what I'll do is I'll bring it back out to where it was. So, in this video we got a good look at how the ruler's indentation markers work and we got a little practice putting them to work to set indentation in our document.
Keep in mind that indentation can also be set within the Paragraph dialog, which we'll look at later in this chapter. Indentation is also automatically set by Word's list features. We'll look at that next.
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