Is it possible to set Microsoft Word to display some text left-aligned and other text right-aligned on a single line? Here's an example of what I mean (vertical lines represent edges of page):

| Chickens, turkey, geese, pigeon and duck   30 |
| Cows                                      240 |
| Pigs and boar                              83 |
| Sheep                          Not applicable |

The full justify option won't work because I don't want anything in the middle of the lines. The table of contents option has the formatting I want, but only supports page numbers, which does me no good.

  • No longer using Word, so don't remember correct wording there, but you can add positional tab, and set it later as aligned to right. Just put it where the right margin is placed to achieve what you want. You write then left-aligned text, tab, right-aligned text.
    – przemoc
    May 5, 2011 at 23:59

4 Answers 4



  1. Make sure you can see the ruler at the top of the page
  2. Click in the ruler to place a tab marker and then drag it over to the right hand side of your page.
  3. Now double click on the marker and change the alignment to right.
  4. Now when you press TAB while typing on that line, instead of just indenting your text a bit, you can type text aligned to the right of the page.
  • 1
    Thank you. Worked like a charm, but got some getting used to. See here for more about how to use tab stops (like how to get rid of them).
    – user137617
    Jun 1, 2012 at 21:57
  • This also works on Google Docs/Drive.
    – jsve
    Feb 26, 2014 at 16:06
  • I want two colums where each column is like the example in the question. I also thought of the tab solution: a table with 1 row and 2 columns; each cell has a right tab at the end. Each cell's content is then multiple rows and in each row I put LEFT TEXT<tab>RIGHT TEXT. Or is there a better solution in that case?
    – Heimdall
    Sep 26, 2018 at 13:28
  • How do I "drag it to the right" so that it exactly matches the right margin, and that it also survives future changes to the page margins? Apr 30, 2020 at 16:08
  • Ordinary tabs cannot be used for this purpose. Use alignment tabs instead. Apr 30, 2020 at 16:13

People should try to give a straight answer to a straight question. Here is one:

For Word 2010:

1) On the Home tab, click Show paragraph marks (the button that looks like an inverted P). 2) Double-click on the header of your document. 3) Under Header and Footer Tools, in the Design tab, click Insert Alignment Tab. 4) Choose Right, click OK. You will see that an arrow character was added. Select it and cut it (Ctrl+X) 5) Paste the character between the words that you want to split. 6) Voilà

  • This duplicates another answer and adds no new content. Please don't post an answer unless you actually have something new to contribute.
    – DavidPostill
    Oct 23, 2016 at 8:09
  • I would politely disagree; I wasn't able to add a new tab marker by clicking on the ruler, but inserting an alignment tab worked perfectly. Thanks!
    – DMan
    Jan 2, 2017 at 5:37
  • Indeed. Alignment tabs solve this problem and also survive future changes to the page orientation. This is exactly the difference from ordinary tabs. Apr 30, 2020 at 16:14

This is accomplished with tabs. The tab stops that show in the ruler at the top of the page determine not just the position of the tab, but also how the text will be aligned relative to that marker.

You can quickly set tabs by clicking the tab selector at the left end of the ruler until it displays the type of tab that you want and then clicking the ruler at the location you want.

The various types of tab alignment have intuitive symbols:

tab stops


In your case, you position Left and Right tab stops where you want them and insert a tab character between the portions of text that will be left- and right-aligned.

  • Yeodave's answer describes the same solution, but I thought this context might be easier for some readers to understand.
    – fixer1234
    Oct 21, 2016 at 21:17
  • Ordinary tabs cannot be used for this purpose. Use alignment tabs instead. Apr 30, 2020 at 16:13
  • @RolandIllig, please read the answer instead of just the first sentence. "Tabs" is a generic term that covers the different kinds of tabs and their range of functionality. The answer describes, in detail, using the alignment functionality of tabs. All tabs are "alignment tabs" of one kind or another; that's kind of their purpose.
    – fixer1234
    Apr 30, 2020 at 20:13

The rules is way too complicated. Make a one row, two-column table. Set the borders on the table to NONE, make the left column aligned left, and the right column aligned right. The next line can just be a normal line outside the table.

  • Please elucidate. Apr 27, 2013 at 5:10
  • 1
    This doesn't work if the length of the longest left-side thing and the length of the longest right-side thing exceed the width of the page. Editing question to make this more clear.
    – Pops
    Apr 29, 2013 at 14:24

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