Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007 and 2010. 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: Hanging Indent Shortcut.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 2, 2013)
A hanging indent is created when the first line of the paragraph starts at the left margin but the second and subsequent lines are indented from the left margin. Hanging indents are a very common formatting tool in many documents.
If you like to use the keyboard to do your formatting, you may be interested in knowing how to format a paragraph to use a hanging indent just by using a keyboard shortcut. You do this in Word by pressing Ctrl+T. This "hangs" a paragraph to the next tab stop. If there are no explicit tab stops in the paragraph, then Word indents to the next default tab stop, typically one-half inch. Each press of the shortcut indents the hang one more tab stop. You can also use Shift+Ctrl+T to undo the indent by one tab stop.
You should note that this shortcut is rather generic in its effect. If you have different levels of hanging indent that you want to use in a document, or if you have quite a few such paragraphs to format, it is much more efficient to create one or more styles that define your hanging indents. You can then assign keyboard shortcuts to these styles and use them to apply the desired formatting.
WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (12315) applies to Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Hanging Indent Shortcut.
Do More in Less Time! Are you ready to harness the full power of Word 2013 to create professional documents? In this comprehensive guide you'll learn the skills and techniques for efficiently building the documents you need for your professional and your personal life. Check out Word 2013 In Depth today!
Drop shadows are a style of paragraph border used to enhance the visual impact of a paragraph. They are also a great way ...Discover More
Normally your text extends from the left margin all the way to the right. If you need to indent a paragraph of your text, ...Discover More
Tired of the formatting used in a paragraph? One way to 'start over' is to make sure that the formatting is reset to its ...Discover More
FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."
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.