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Lesson 2: Check Your Settings

Sometimes, for mysterious reasons, your computer will do funny things like give you an extra large gap between paragraphs, or give you an extra wide left margin, or give you an extra tiny font. These problems can be fixed by changing the settings in Google Docs.

The problem is that many students wait until after they have finished writing their paper before they try to fix their settings, and often, by then, the problem has become more complicated. In fact, some students are forced to do hours of extra work "undoing" bad formatting. It's smarter to check your settings before you start.

Lesson Steps

 
1.

Check your margins.

  • Go to File, then Page Setup.
  • Make sure your margins are set at the following values:
      • Top = 1
      • Bottom = 1
      • Left = 1
      • Right = 1
2.

Check your font.

  • Set your font style to Calibri.
  • Set your font size to 12.
3.

Check your text alignment.

  • Make sure that the Left Align icon is selected.
4.

Check your tab space.

  • Put your cursor at the left margin.
  • Tap the tab key once. Your cursor should jump over .5 inch.
5.

Check your line spacing.

  • Click on the Line Spacing icon.
  • Select Custom Spacing.
  • In the box for Line Spacing, make sure it says 1. (If it says 1.15, change it to 1).
  • In the boxes for Paragraph Spacing, put the following values:
    • Before = 0
    • After = 0
6.

Make these settings your default settings.

  • In the menu ribbon, find the Styles box. It's a box that says Normal text.
  • Click on the little downward-facing arrow next to Normal text.
  • Now click on the right-facing arrow next to Normal text.
  • Select Update 'Normal text' to match.
7.

Congratulations! You have finished this lesson!