Category Archives for "Featured – Table of Contents"

Table of Contents: Manually marking TOC entries

While I'm a big proponent of using Styles to create Tables of Contents (so easy!), that's not the only way to do it. You can mark individual headings (and even paragraph text) to include in your TOC, designating the TOC level for each.

There are two methods for doing this. Which one you choose will depend on what result you're after.

Method 1: Designating TOC Entries with Outline Levels

If your document isn't using Heading Styles to control headings, or the heading levels don't match the hierarchy you want in your Table of Contents, you can apply an outline level to each heading.

First, click your cursor into the heading you want to designate for your TOC (assuming that the heading is in its own paragraph) and right-click:

As you can see, you're going to the Paragraph dialog box, where you can set the outline level.

(If the heading is already using Heading Styles, the Outline Level field will have a pre-assigned value and will be greyed out.)

Repeat this maneuver for all of the headings you want to mark.

Speed tip: Mark the first heading of a particular level, then double-click the Format Painter button (looks like a paintbrush) in the Clipboard/Paste area of the Home tab. That makes Format Painter "persistent", meaning that every paragraph you click afterward will have the same settings applied to it, including your newly-chosen outline level. To turn Format Painter off, hit the Escape key in the upper left-hand corner of your keyboard. You can repeat this process for each level of heading you want to including in your TOC outline.

Method 2: Marking TOC entries with TOC codes

In situations where (a) the entries you want in your Table of Contents aren't in their own paragraphs (e.g., a few words boldfaced at the beginning of a paragraph) or (b) the text you want to point to isn't what you want the TOC entry to say (i.e., you want a shortened version of that text to appear in the TOC), then you're faced with marking each entry with a TOC code. Granted, this method does give you more flexibility, but with options comes a bit of complexity. It's a trade-off.

Let's go back to our sample contract and begin marking the first entry, by selecting the text with the mouse or keyboard like so:

Be sure that you're not picking up any extra codes (like the line break illustrated above). It's a good idea to turn on Show/Hide (click the paragraph symbol in the middle of the Home tab) to display all that hidden formatting and other codes during this step. You'll want to turn off Show/Hide when you generate your TOC, but for now it'll come in handy.

Once you've got your entry correctly marked, press ALT-SHIFT-O (hold down the ALT and SHIFT keys and press the letter "O") to bring up the Mark Table of Contents Entry dialog box.

Be sure to designate which level you want this entry to appear in (1-9); the Table Identifier should always be "C" for Table of Contents.

Repeat this maneuver for each entry you want to appear in your Table of Contents. Unfortunately, the Format Painter trick won't work here, since Word is embedding a unique code behind each entry that looks like this (assuming you have Show/Hide turned on — remember?).

Here's where you get all kinds of flexibility if you know how to break down this code. For example:

  • If you want the entry in your TOC table to say something other than "Definitions", you can change the text within the quotation marks behind the code "TC".
  • If you decide later that this entry needs to appear at another level, you can change the number that appears in quotes after the "/l" code.
  • If you decide to remove this entry from your TOC altogether, you can simply delete this entire code.

Let's Review

Here's what we've covered in this tutorial:

  • check
    How to mark TOC entries using outline levels
  • check
    How to mark TOC entries using TOC codes
  • check
    Which situations call for each marking method

The next tutorial in this series will cover ...

No matter which method you've used to mark your TOC entries, it's time to insert your Table of Contents into your document. Click Next to get started!

20 How to modify a Table of Contents in Microsoft Word

You've built a Table of Contents in Microsoft Word using the Styles feature to mark the TOC entries or by marking them manually. And just when you're about to pat yourself on the back for having an automatic Table of Contents in your document, you notice something's a little ... off. Maybe the font's not quite right. Perhaps the font's okay but the spacing's not. Or the indentation. It could be you want/don't want the dot leaders running up to the page numbers.

Suffice it to say you just want to alter the format of it. But how?

Keep reading →

5 Inserting a table of contents using styles

One of the things I'm on a rant about these days is loooooong documents.  Complicated documents, like 20+ page contracts and appellate briefs and stuff like that.

Why?  Because they always seem to need special stuff inserted in them.  Like custom headers and footers.  And level-1 and level-2 and level-out-the-wazoo headings.  It's enough to make your head spin.

But if you've got mad skills and you plan your document right, a lot of this stuff becomes easier.  Like putting in a simple table of contents, for example.

Keep reading →