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: Applying Styles.

Applying Styles

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 13, 2014)

Styles will do you no good if you cannot apply them to your text. There are three ways you can apply styles.

The first way to apply styles depends on your use of the toolbars. The left-most side of the Formatting toolbar indicates the style of the current paragraph. You can change the style of whatever you have selected by pulling down the list and selecting a different style. If you have nothing selected and you pick a paragraph style in the drop-down list, then that style is applied to the paragraph in which the insertion point is located.

The second method of applying styles uses the menus. You can follow these steps to apply a style, if you are using Word 2002 or Word 2003:

  1. Position the insertion point in the paragraph to which you want to apply a paragraph style, or select the characters to which you want to apply a character style.
  2. Choose Styles and Formatting from the Format menu. Word displays the Styles and Formatting pane at the right side of the document window.
  3. In the Pick Formatting to Apply List, click once on the style you want applied.

If you are using Word 97 or Word 2000, the steps are slightly different:

  1. Position the insertion point in the paragraph to which you want to apply a paragraph style, or select the characters to which you want to apply a character style.
  2. Choose Style from the Format menu. You will see the Style dialog box.
  3. In the Styles box, select the name of the style you want to apply.
  4. Click on Apply.

The final method assumes you have assigned your styles to specific shortcut keys. If you have, then you can position the insertion pointer in the paragraph to which you want to apply the style, and then use the shortcut key.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1888) 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: Applying Styles.

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

Use Filenames That Sort Properly

If you take some care when you name your document files, you'll find it much easier to manage those files at a later ...

Discover More

Applying the All Caps Format

Want your text to always appear in upper-case, regardless of how you type it? Word allows you to add formatting to your ...

Discover More

Specifying the Number of MRU Files

MRU (most recently used) files can be a great help when you work with a given set of common workbooks. Excel allows you ...

Discover More

Learning Made Easy! Quickly teach yourself how to format, publish, and share your content using Word 2013. With Step by Step, you set the pace, building and practicing the skills you need, just when you need them! Check out Microsoft Word 2013 Step by Step today!

More WordTips (menu)

Automatically Updating Styles

When you add formatting to some text in your document, Word may apply your formatting to every other part of your ...

Discover More

Searching for Styles

If you use styles to format your text, you can later search for words and phrases that are formatted using various ...

Discover More

Preventing Styles from Changing

It is frustrating to spend a lot of time working on a document, getting your styles just right, and then have those ...

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 2 + 4?

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


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.