By default, Microsoft Word comes with default heading styles (e.g. Heading 1, Heading 2, Heading 3….).

Default Headings

These defaults can be changed based on need. For example, I modified the default headings to look like this:

Modified the Default Headings in Word

So now I have a document that is structured like:

    1. Content
    1.1 Content
    1.2 Content
    1.2.1 Content
    2. Content
    2.1 Content
    2.1.1 Content
    2.1.2 Content
------ section break -------
    3. Content
    3.1 Content
    3.2 Content
    3.3 Content
    4. Content
------ section break -------
    5. Content
    5.1 Content
    5.2 Content
    5.3 Content
    5.3.1 Content

Each of the major areas of content are separated by sections. So, for purposes of this illustration, let's say I have 2 section breaks in this document separating 3 main areas of content.

However, what I need to do is restart the numbering at the beginning of each section and put a custom prefix is front of those numbers. Like this:

    X1. Content
    X1.1 Content
    X1.2 Content
    X1.2.1 Content
    X2. Content
    X2.1 Content
    X2.1.1 Content
    X2.1.2 Content
------ section break -------
    XI1 Content
    XI1.1 Content
    XI1.2 Content
    XI1.3 Content
    XI2 Content
------ section break -------
    XII1 Content
    XII1.1 Content
    XII1.2 Content
    XII1.3 Content
    XII1.3.1 Content

I tried doing this with the simple command sequence of "Restart Numbering" and "Set Numbering Value", but if you are using numbered headers, it won't let you put a letter prefix in front of it.

Let's say I have up to three levels per section -- x, x.x, x.x.x --- my thinking is that I need to create 3 custom heading styles per section for a total of, in this example, 9 custom heading styles (if my math is right). I was hoping there was an easier way than that.

Any suggestions?

  • Which version of Word are you using? – Dmitry Selitskiy Jul 26 '11 at 19:45
  • 1
    Word 2010. I basically went through and did the brute force method, making it easier on myself by creating a template and then modifying the style template and using a "Save As" type of mechanism for each numbering style I needed. – Joel Marcey Jul 26 '11 at 21:52
  • I just played around with this scenario and came to the same conclusion: a group of heading styles per section. It doesn't look like you can automatically switch the numbering style after a section break. – Dmitry Selitskiy Jul 27 '11 at 4:51

What about shifting the heading level by one?

    X [empty, white text color] (Heading 1)
    X1. Content                 (Heading 2)
    X1.1 Content                (Heading 3)
    X1.2 Content                (Heading 3)
    X1.2.1 Content              (Heading 4)
    X2. Content                 (Heading 2)
    X2.1 Content                (Heading 3)
    X2.1.1 Content              (Heading 4)
    X2.1.2 Content              (Heading 4)
------ section break -------
    XI [empty, white text color] (Heading 1)
    XI1 Content                  (Heading 2)
    XI1.1 Content                (Heading 3)
    XI1.2 Content                (Heading 3)
    XI1.3 Content                (Heading 3)
    XI2 Content                  (Heading 2)
------ section break -------
    XII [empty, white text color] (Heading 1)
    XII1 Content                  (Heading 2)
    XII1.1 Content                (Heading 3)
    XII1.2 Content                (Heading 3)
    XII1.3 Content                (Heading 3)
    XII1.3.1 Content              (Heading 4)

No there's no easier way.

It should work if you duplicate styles H1..H3 to XIH1..XIH3 and XIIH1..XIH3. Then, when you create your custom ToC, add not only H1..H3 but XIH1..XIH3 and XIIH1..XIIH3 with their respective level values.

What you are trying to do is the same as when one has a number of chapters (say 1,...N) plus a number of appendices Appendix A... Appendix M. AFAIK, the only way to do it is with custom headers.

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