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Tweak Bulleted Lists With Hanging Indent Marker in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows

Learn to tweak the start position of paragraphs in bulleted lists using the Hanging Indent Marker in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows. This Hanging Indent Marker lets you control the positioning of your text content that follows the bullet character.


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Product/Version: PowerPoint 2010 for Windows

OS: Microsoft Windows XP and higher






How your paragraphs get positioned as a bulleted list within PowerPoint's text placeholders or another text object is influenced by three types of Indent Markers:

  1. The First Indent Marker repositions the bullets rightwards (or leftwards).
  2. The Hanging Indent Marker tweaks the positioning of the paragraph following the bullet character. We explore this Marker within this tutorial.
  3. The Left Indent Marker links the First Line Indent Marker and Hanging Indent Marker.

Of the three Indent Markers you can see on the Ruler, the Hanging Indent Marker (highlighted in red within Figure 1) is used to tweak the position of the paragraph following the bullet. The Hanging Indent Marker is also known as the Middle Caret.

Bulleted paragraphs selected
Figure 1: Bulleted paragraphs selected

Follow these steps to learn more in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows:

  1. Select the bulleted paragraphs for which you want to alter the spacing-after-the-bullet. In Figure 1 above you can see some 3rd level bulleted paragraphs selected. For this example, we are selecting 3rd level bullets so that you can explore the effect of moving Hanging Indent Marker for the selected paragraphs towards both the sides (leftwards and rightwards).
  2. Note: If you want to change the position of a particular bulleted paragraph, select only that individual bulleted paragraph. If you want the change to effect all bulleted paragraphs in the placeholder (or text box), select all the paragraphs.
  3. With your selection still active, you can reposition the paragraphs in any of the following ways:
  4. Way 1

  5. If you want to move the selected paragraphs rightwards (farther away from the bullet), click on the Hanging Indent Marker and drag it rightwards along the Horizontal Ruler as shown in Figure 2. It is quite easy to select the Left Indent Marker that sits below the Ruler rather than the Hanging Indent Marker, which sits on the Ruler. Make sure you click and drag the latter.
  6. Hanging Indent Marker being dragged rightwards
    Figure 2: Hanging Indent Marker being dragged rightwards
  7. Tip: Pressing the Ctrl key while you drag the carets will give you more control over the placement of the carets.
  8. Stop dragging when you are in the new position where you want to place the selected paragraphs. In Figure 3 you can see that the selected paragraphs moved rightwards. Compare Figures 3 and 2 to see the increased space between the round bullet characters and the paragraphs.
  9. Paragraphs repositioned without effecting the bullet character's position
    Figure 3: Paragraphs repositioned without effecting the bullet character's position
  10. Way 2

  11. We next dragged the Hanging Indent Marker leftwards so that it is placed right below the First Indent Marker (see Figure 4).
  12. Hanging Indent Marker positioned below the First Indent Marker
    Figure 4: Hanging Indent Marker positioned below the First Indent Marker
  13. Way 3

  14. You can continue dragging the Hanging Indent Marker leftwards beyond the position of the First Line Indent Marker, as shown in Figure 5. This actually causes the bullet character to move rather than the paragraphs.
  15. Hanging Indent Marker being dragged beyond First Indent Marker
    Figure 5: Hanging Indent Marker being dragged beyond First Indent Marker
  16. Notice the position of the selected paragraphs in Figure 6. Even after moving the Hanging Indent Marker leftwards beyond the First Line Indent Marker, the actual position of the paragraphs has not changed. Instead, the bullet characters are repositioned leftwards (compare with Figure 5, above).
  17. Bullet characters get repositioned instead of paragraphs
    Figure 6: Bullet characters get repositioned instead of paragraphs
Note: Instead of changing position of bullet paragraphs on each and every slide in the presentation, you can access the Slide Master view and make changes there. This way you will be making changes just once and every slide will be effected.

See Also:

Tweak Bulleted Lists With Hanging Indent Marker in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Tweak Bulleted Lists With Hanging Indent Marker in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac

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