Word Outlining Made Simple

In my last article, I introduced you to keyboard shortcuts for MS Word. This time we will focus on outlining. Many of you may already know about MS Word’s outline view, but what you may not realize is that you can perform all your necessary outline formatting using the keyboard alone.

Suppose you want to create or modify an outline. Let’s try the following exercise:

  1. Navigate to the article below.
  2. Competitive Swimming, an Ideal Sport for Kids
  3. http://www.teachervision.fen.com/writing/essays/1779.html
  4. Open a blank new Word document (Ctrl + N).
  5. Highlight this outline with the mouse (sorry, you’ll need the mouse for the actual selecting).
  6. Copy this outline into the new document (Ctrl + C, Ctrl + V).
  7. Highlight the outline using the arrows and Shift + Ctrl keys.
    Remove all web-based formatting by typing Ctrl + Spacebar.
  8. Switch to Word’s outline view (Alt + V + O).

Now try to move and edit the text:

  1. Select section 4 using Shift + Ctrl + arrows.
  2. Move section 4 so that it is immediately beneath section 1, the introduction. Hold Shift + Alt + up arrow until it is relocated.
  3. Add to section 4, now section 2, two sub-headings: Social and Academic; Type Shift + Alt + right arrow to add this heading.
  4. Keep the original content under Social while adding two points in body text under Academic.

For those of you, who use Hebrew enabled Word, keep in mind that Shift + Alt or Start + Spacebar also switches the text between English and Hebrew. You will need to type Shift + Alt simultaneously with the appropriate arrow key to override this problem. Depending on your template styles, the result should look similar to the screen shot on the bottom. I highlighted the new sections in blue.



A Summary of MS Word Keyboard Shortcuts in Outline View

The table below summarizes most of the Word, outline view, keyboard shortcuts. This information supplements the shortcuts that I presented in my last column.

Next time: I will explain how to create and edit your own Keyboard Shortcuts.