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How to do a hanging indent in MS Word

As always with Microsoft, there are a number of ways to create a hanging indent.

Using the Format Command:

  1. At the top of the page , click Format, then Paragraph.  Click the Indents and Spacing tab if it is not already visible.
  2. In the Dialog box, find Indentation.  Click on the Special drop-down list.  Select Hanging.

  3. The By box specifies how large the indent will be.   The default, 0.5", is a good size.

  4. Click OK.

  5. Type the entries.  Word should do the hanging indents automatically.

  6. You can also type the entries first, without any indents, select them all, then follow steps 1-4 to indent them all at once.

Using a Keyboard Shortcut:

  • CTRL-T is the keyboard shortcut for a hanging indent.  Either press CTRL-T before typing each entry, or type all the entries first, select them, then press CTRL-T.

Using the Horizontal Ruler:

  1. If the horizontal ruler is not visible, click View, then Rulers.
  2. Select the bibliography entries.
  3. On the horizontal ruler, drag the hanging indent marker to the point where you want the hanging indent to begin (1/2 inch is a spot).  Be careful to point the cursor to the hanging indent marker, not the left indent marker.  I find this very awkward; I prefer to use one of the other methods.



Site created by Teresa Rupp, Mount St. Mary's University
This page was last updated January 04, 2005