Formatting text means changing its physical appearance. Many different aspects of the text’s appearance can be changed, such as, the size of the letters, the font (typeface), whether it is in bold type, italicized or underlined.

Selecting Text

You may want to format only some of the text or set a format for the whole document. This will involve selecting the text and then applying the formatting to it.

To select text, position the cursor at the beginning of the text, hold down the Shift key, and arrow to the end of the text.

To unselect text, just use the arrow keys to move away from the selection.

To select all the text in a document, press Control + A.

Once the text is selected, you can copy it, move it or apply some formatting to it.

Follow this link to learn how to copy and move text

Font Type

Font (or Typeface) is the name given to the physical design and appearance of letters. There are many different fonts installed on most computers. Two of the most commonly used are Times New Roman and Arial. This Website uses Droid Sans and Lato.

To change the font, first select the text and then press Control + Shift + F. This opens the Font Settings. You can then type in the name of the font or arrow down to select which font you would like, and press Enter. There is a visual indication of what the text will look like towards the bottom of the Font Settings.

If you want to set a font for the whole document, select the font before you begin typing.

You can also access the Font Settings by pressing the Applications Key (or Shift + F10), arrowing down to Font and pressing Enter.

Font Size

You can change the size of the text in the Font Settings by Tabbing to Size, entering a number and pressing Enter.

You can also change the font size using some handy keyboard shortcuts:

  • To make the text smaller, select the text and press Control + Shift + Comma.
  • To make the text larger, select the text and press Control + Shift + Full Stop.

Font size is measured in points, where 72 points is about an inch in height. Standard size, clear print is usually set to 14 point. Large print size depends on the requirements of the reader, but is usually 18 point or higher.

Bold, Italic and Underline

These formatting options can be set in the Font Settings by Tabbing to Font Style and arrowing down. But there are some very easy-to-remember keyboard shortcuts:

  • To embolden some selected text, press Control + B.
  • To italicize, press Control + I.
  • To underline, press Control + U.

To remove any of the above, just press the relevant keyboard shortcut again, and the selected text will go back to how it was.


You can use the Font Settings to change the colour of the text:

  1. Select the text you want to change and then press Control + Shift + F.
  2. Tab to the Font colour.
  3. Arrow down to get to the choice of colours, then use the arrow keys to find the colour you want.
  4. Press Enter to set that colour.
  5. Then Tab to the OK button and press Enter.