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: Understanding Picas.

Understanding Picas

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 11, 2010)

A pica is a typographical term for a unit of measure. It is roughly equivalent to 1/6 of an inch. Picas are understood and used extensively by everyone in the publishing trade, particularly in design, typesetting, and printing.

If you are familiar with picas, you can use them as a standard measurement in Word. When entering a measurement in picas, simply use the characters pi at the end of the measurement. For instance, if you want to specify the space to be left after a paragraph as 2 picas, you would enter 2 pi in the After box of the Paragraph dialog box.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1070) 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: Understanding Picas.

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

Hiding Errors on Printouts

If there are error values in a worksheet, you may not want those error values to appear on a printout. Excel actually allows ...

Discover More

Creating a Shape

Ever wanted to create a simple drawing in your worksheet? Excel has made this simple. This tip explains how Excel uses ...

Discover More

Automatically Hiding the Personal Workbook

If you leave your Personal.xlsb workbook visible from one Excel session to another, you may find that you unwittingly make ...

Discover More

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!

MORE WORDTIPS (MENU)

Using Parallel Columns

Users of WordPerfect know what parallel columns are. There is no such capability in Word, but there are ways you can achieve ...

Discover More

Jumping to the End of Page after Enter

Imagine you start typing in a new document, and when you press the Enter key the cursor jumps a huge distance to the bottom ...

Discover More

Understanding Point Sizes

Points are the common unit of measure for typefaces in the printing industry. They are also used quite often in Word. Here's ...

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 for this tip:

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. 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 nine more than 2?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


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.

Links and Sharing
Share