Chapter Headings

From Apache OpenOffice Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

As mentioned above you have to tell the programme what is a Heading and what is Text Body.

For that you use the following keyboard shortcuts:

  • Ctrl + 0 for Text Body (ground level)
  • Ctrl + 1 for Chapter Headings (level 1)
  • Ctrl + 2 for Section Headings (level 2)
  • Ctrl + 3 for Subsection Headings (level 3)

and so on.

Documentation note.png It isn’t necessary to mark the whole paragraph – just place the cursor anywhere within the paragraph and apply one of the above shortcuts.

[On Macs, the Ctrl Key is replaced with the Cmd Key ⌘ instead. Linux machines use the same keys as Windows. Other operating systems may vary.]

Format your Headings

To control the appearance say of all your chapter headings (Level 1), simply right click on any one of them and choose the option Edit Paragraph Style. Any changes made here will apply to all other Level 1 Headings. Same goes of course for the other levels, indeed for any paragraph style.

Generally headings should meet following criteria:

  • left alignment
  • hyphenation turned off
  • single line spacing
  • conciseness
  • avoid several titles in succession with no text in between

Here my formatting suggestions for the first three levels of headings:

Style Size Typeface Spacing above Spacing below
Level 1 16pt Bold 1.2 cm 0.5 cm
Level 2 13pt Bold 1 cm 0.4 cm
Level 3 13pt Standard or Italic 0.8 cm 0.3 cm

Table 2: Styles for first three levels of headings based on font Garamond (just a suggestion)

Blank Lines?

When in a hurry it’s tempting, instead of using this method, to simply add a couple of blank lines before a heading and another blank line following itin order to influence spacing. That would be a mistake. For one it would destroy the “sticking” effect, i.e. the property of headings to always keep together with the next paragraph, and second it would lead to inconsistent spacings above and below the title. The desired spacings must be recorded in the header styles.

How Many Levels?

I would recommend a maximum of two fully numbered levels. In case you need a third or even fourth level, then leave these preferably without showing sublevels (in above example we opted for a), b) c)… style). You needn’t necessarily include all levels in your table of contents (in the present introduction I only included the first level). On the whole avoid a too finely spun structure which might suggest an equally finespun logic in the social reality you are trying to describe. For technical publications or textbooks on the other hand that would be fine.

1 Chapter
   1.1 Section
     a) subsection
     b) subsection
     c) subsection
   1.2 Section
     a) subsection
     b) subsection
   1.3 Section
2 Chapter
   2.1 Section
     a) subsection
     b) subsection
   2.2 Section
   2.3 Section
     a) subsection
     b) subsection
     c) subsection

Per level you should have at least two headings. A 2.1 heading should always be followed by subsequent 2.2. heading.

Headings will appear in the table of contents in full length. So try to keep them nice and short.

New Page per Chapter?

If you want chapters to begin on a new page, then right-click on any chapter heading and choose Edit Paragraph Style; under the tab Text Flow check box Breaks › Insert › Type › Page.

If you would like to avoid chapter headings near the bottom of the page, you can insert a page break right before the heading using the shortcut Ctrl + Return. This will force the heading onto the next page.

A more elegant alternative would be to right click the paragraph immediately following the heading and choose Paragraph… (not Edit paragraph style) and there under the tabText Flow choose Do not split paragraph. The paragraph in question will ‘pull’ the heading immediately above it along to the next page should there not be enough room for both on the present page. Using this method consistently spares you the ordeal of a final check for any misplaced headings.

Documentation note.png Note: you’ve changed the formatting of this one paragraph here, not the overall Paragraph Style!


Under Tools › Options › Writer › Compatibility uncheck three choice boxes:

  • Add spacing between paragraphs and tables; unchecking this option ensures that the set spacing below a paragraph and the set spacing above the paragraph immediately following it do not get added together; instead only the larger of the two spacings takes effect
  • Add paragraph and table spacing at tops of pages; unchecking this option ensures that headings appear right at the top margin, without the usual set spacing separating them from a previous paragraph
  • Expand word space on lines with manual line breaks in justified paragraphs; unchecking this option ensures that inserting a new line using shortcut Shift + Return will not expand the words on the previous line right up to the right margin; instead they will be left aligned even in a paragraph with justified alignment

Having removed these three ticks don’t forget to press the button Use as Default so that these changes apply also to any future documents.

< Previous Page

Next Page >

Personal tools