Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Put Your Space Before or After?.

Put Your Space Before or After?

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 15, 2019)

1

It is not uncommon for page layout designs to call for extra spacing between paragraphs. Word allows you to add extra space either before or after a paragraph. The one you choose is up to you. Remember, however, that the spacing is cumulative. For example, if you have a paragraph that is formatted for 12 points of space after it, followed by a paragraph formatted for 15 points of space before it, then there will be 27 points of space between the paragraphs. You will make your design and layout work much easier if you are consistent in where you add the extra space—either before or after a paragraph.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (951) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Put Your Space Before or After?.

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

Adding Caption Labels

When using the captioning capabilities of Word, you aren't limited to the three default caption labels provided in the ...

Discover More

Inconsistent Formatting in an Index

When indexing a document, you may find that some of your index entries aren't formatted the same as your other index ...

Discover More

Entering Dates in Excel

When you type information into a cell, Excel tries to figure out what type of information you are entering. If Excel can ...

Discover More

The First and Last Word on Word! Bestselling For Dummies author Dan Gookin puts his usual fun and friendly candor back to work to show you how to navigate Word 2013. Spend more time working and less time trying to figure it all out! Check out Word 2013 For Dummies today!

More WordTips (menu)

Indent and Justify Command

WordPerfect users are familiar with the F4 command, which indents and justifies a paragraph. Word does not have an ...

Discover More

Adding Automatic Lines

Want an easy way to add lines in your document? You can do it by making sure Word is using one of its AutoFormat features.

Discover More

Understanding At Least Line Spacing

Line spacing is used to control how close lines are to each other within a paragraph. Word allows you to specify several ...

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}] 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 seven minus 5?

2019-06-20 14:10:22

J Nelson

This tip may be inaccurate in one particular: the spacing before and after paragraphs is not cumulative. I confirmed this by adding 0 pts before and 6 pts after to a series of paragraphs. Then I changed one of those to 6pts before and 6pts after. Both on screen and in printing, the spacing did not change from the prior setting.


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon 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.