Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Changing a Heading to Body Text.

Changing a Heading to Body Text

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated January 18, 2020)

1

Word contains a powerful outlining system that allows you to quickly make changes to document structure. You do this in Outline view, which is most easily invoked by clicking on the Outline view button on the status bar. When you enter Outline view, Word displays the Outlining tab on the ribbon. You use the controls on the tab to change indentation levels for your outline.

Besides headings, you may have body text within your document. You may wish to change a current heading to body text. You can do this in any of these ways, after positioning the insertion point on the heading you want to change:

  • Using the mouse, click on the Demote to Body Text tool. This is the one that looks like two right arrows.
  • Apply a formatting style that is not a heading level.
  • Using the mouse, drag the body text indicator (the small plus sign to the left of the heading) to the right. Drag it far enough that you pass through all nine heading levels, which is necessary before the paragraph is changed to body text.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (5335) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Changing a Heading to Body Text.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Installing the Date Picker

When creating your own user interfaces within Excel, the various developer controls can add a nice touch. One such ...

Discover More

Unhiding Columns that are Persistently Hidden

If you were trying to format a worksheet and nothing you did could make the first two columns appear, would you be ...

Discover More

Including Footnotes and Endnotes in Word Counts

When you have Word calculate how many words there are in a document, it normally doesn't pay attention to text in ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Controlling How Body Text is Displayed

When working in Outline view, you can control how Word displays the body text under each heading. You can specify that ...

Discover More

Changing Outline Heading Level

Working with a document's outline can be a great way to organize your writing. Word provides a variety of tools for ...

Discover More

Understanding Outlining in Word

Remember when you needed to create outlines for your writing when you were in school? Word includes outlining ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is six more than 6?

2020-10-30 17:45:30

ggggggg

You explained everything except how to find the all-important Demote to Body Text tool.


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.