In my current document I've done two things:

  1. Customised the "Heading 1/2/3/..." and "Title" styles.

  2. Defined a new multi-level list style to use my customised "Heading x" and "Title" styles so that level 1 in the list uses the "Title" style, level 2 uses "Heading 1", level 3 uses "Heading 2", and so on.

Right now I am using level 1 (in "Title" style) in my multi-level list as chapter headings, and level 2 (in "Heading 1" style) as section headings within the chapter. However, I discovered that when I insert a Table of Contents, the chapter headings (the ones in "Title" style) do not show up in the table. I guess this means that Word 2016 only uses "Heading x" styles when constructing table of contents???

What I want my table of contents is for it to show chapters and the section headings within each one.

What should I do?

Should I re-define my multi-level list so that the top level (which I want to use as chapter titles) uses the "Heading 1" style instead of the "Title" style? Or is there another way to tell Word 2016 that I want chapter titles in the table of contents?

Thank you!


You'll just have to insert a custom TOC that is based the Title style in addition to Heading styles, and then make a few other adjustments.

  1. On the References tab, click Table of Contents > Custom Table of Contents.
  2. In the Table of Contents dialog box, click Options.
  3. In the Table of Contents Options dialog box, under the Styles check box (which should be selected by default), scroll down the list until you find the Title style.
  4. Enter 1 in the field to the right of the style name.
  5. Scroll back up until you find the heading styles.
  6. Change the 1 to the right of Heading 1 to 2, change the 2 next to Heading 2 to 3, and so on.
  7. Click OK twice to insert the TOC.
  • Thank you for your detailed instructions, it worked for me! I do wonder, however, whether the builtin "Title" style is canonically intended for use as chapter titles, the title for the whole document/book, or something else? – hpy Aug 14 '18 at 18:44

The title style is for the document title.

Headings are what you should use for chapters, sections, etc.


Based on your description of sections being subordinate to chapters, Chapters should be Heading 1 and Sections should be Heading 2.

The reason Title did not show up in the TOC is because it is not an Outlined Style. Heading 1 is an outline level 1 style, Heading 2 is an outline level 2 style.

Assuming your TOC is set to show outline levels 1 & 2, then it all will work correctly.


There are several very good reasons to use the built-in Heading styles 1-9 (even if you've changed them to look the way you need them). Using the Title style as Heading 1 is going to cause you problems with things like captioning, footnotes, lists of tables and figures, etc. I recommend you return to the Heading 1 style as your top-level heading.

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