How to Use the Left Tab Stop in Word 2007 - dummies

How to Use the Left Tab Stop in Word 2007

By Dan Gookin

The Left Tab Stop feature is the one you’ll use most often in Word 2007. When you press the Tab key, the insertion pointer advances to the left tab stop, where you can continue to type text. This works best for typing lists, for organizing information on a single line paragraph, or when you want to indent the first line of a multi-line paragraph.

This example creates a simple two-column list.

  1. On a new line, press Tab.

  2. Type the item for the first column.

    Try to use two or three words max.

  3. Press Tab.

  4. Type the item for the second column.

  5. Press Enter to end that line and start a new line.

  6. Repeat Steps 1 through 5 for each item in the list.

  7. Summon the Ruler, if necessary.


    Click the View Ruler button to display the Ruler if it’s hidden.

  8. Select all the lines of text that you want to organize into a two-column tabbed list.

  9. Click the Tab gizmo until the Left Tab icon appears.


    If it already shows up in the Tab gizmo, you’re set to go.

  10. Click the mouse on the Ruler at the number 1, the 1-inch position.

    This sets a left tab stop at one inch. The selected text immediately falls into place.

  11. Click the mouse to set a second tab stop at the 3-inch position.

    The list looks nice and even, in two columns.
    The list looks nice and even, in two columns.
  12. Adjust the tab stops if necessary.

    Slide the tab stops left or right on the Ruler as needed to help clean up your list. As you slide the tab stops, a dashed vertical line extends through your text, to show you where text lines up.

These steps can also be used to create a three- or even a four-column list.