How to Edit Multiple Header Levels in MS Word

Microsoft allows you to add titles to your document. These headers are not just specially formatted text. For example, your header is not a header because it is larger in font size and is a different color. Headings in MS Word are a document element that is used to build the table of contents and trace the hierarchy of the entire document. Low-level headings are subordinate to high-level headings and make it easier to create sections within a document. If after creating a large document, you realize you need to edit multiple header levels, you’ll need a way to do it quickly.

To be fair, you can always select a header within a document and select the correct header level from the header styles toolbar. There is nothing to say that it doesn’t work. It works, perfectly, but it will take longer. The smartest thing to do is to use the navigation pane.

On MS Word, click on the section at the bottom that shows the page number you are on. It will read something like Page x of x. This will enable the navigation bar on the left. Here, go to the Headers tab. This will list every single header in the document. Click and drag a heading from one section to another to easily move it. The content under the headings will move with them, tables, images, and text.

Editing Multiple Header Levels in MS Word

Now that you’ve placed the header where you want it, you can edit multiple header levels from the navigation bar.

Right-click the header whose level you want to change. The context menu will have two options called ‘Promote’ and ‘Decrease’. The Promote option will increase the header level of the selected header by one. For example, if you promote a header that is Heading 2, it will become Heading 1.

Likewise, the Shrink option will decrease the header level of the selected header by one. For example, if you declassify a header that is Heading 2, it will become Heading 3.Edit MS Word header levels

After changing the header levels, you will need to update the table of contents. The navigation bar will automatically update.

Unfortunately, you can’t select multiple headers and promote or demote them all at once. This would make the task exceptionally easier, but for reasons known only to Microsoft, this isn’t an option. Perhaps the next version of MS Office, MS Office 2019, will support it although you will only be able to use it if you are using a Windows 10 computer.

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