How to Make a Numbered List in Word 2016

By Dan Gookin

In Word 2016, it’s quite easy to make a numbered list; Word does most of the work for you. For a list of numbered items, just write the text. Don’t write the numbers at the start of each paragraph. Then, after the list is complete, select the paragraphs as a block and click the Numbering command button, shown here.


The Numbering command assigns a number to each paragraph, plus it formats the paragraphs with a hanging indent, which looks nice.

The paragraph numbering continues (it’s a format) until you turn it off. To do so, either press the Enter key twice or click the Numbering command button again.

As a bonus, if you insert or rearrange paragraphs in the list, Word automatically renumbers everything. That makes this feature better than trying to manually number and format the paragraphs.

  • To choose another numbering format, click the menu triangle next to the Numbering command button. You can choose letters or Roman numerals, or you can concoct a numbering scheme by choosing the command Define New Number Format.

  • The None number format removes numbering from a paragraph.

  • You can break and resume paragraph numbering: First, apply the numbering to all paragraphs. To un-number a paragraph, click at the start of the first word and press the Backspace key. The numbering for that paragraph is removed, and the remaining paragraphs are renumbered.