Built-in Styles in Word Based on Normal Don't Update When Normal's Font Size is Changed

oaktrees
oaktrees used Ask the Experts™
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Aren't out of the box Styles in Word (2016) like

Heading 1
Heading 2
Heading 3

auto-updating in terms of font size?  They show themselves to be "Based on Normal"  But, I updated the Normal text size to 18.  Then, started using Heading 1 - it was just 16.  And, Heading 2 just 13.

I even went further and selected both of these with a check box "Auto Updating".

How can I get my Headings 1 ~ x default styles to update themselves in terms of Font Size in Word?

Thanks!

OT
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Try this. Go to File -Options – Add-Ins. In the bottom of the dialog box next to Manage, select Templates – Go. In the Templates and Add-ins box, under the Template tab, click the checkbox next to “Automatically update document styles.”  Automatically-Update-Styles75.jpgPaul

Author

Commented:
Hi Flyster,

Thanks for taking a look at this question! :)))

Applied your suggestion.

Closed Word.

Re opened.

Made changes to Normal in the file in question - Heading font sizes remained unchanged.

Created a new, totally blank file - attached - containing only:

Normal
Heading 1
Heading 2
Heading 3

Applied headings to the heading text.  Edited the normal style.  Heading font sizes remain unchanged.

Many thanks,

OT
link-styles-to-auto-update-test-201.docx
Normal, Heading 1, Heading 2 and the rest are each individual styles with their own definitions. Changes made to one style will not be seen in any of the other styles. When you open a new document, it is automatically set to the Normal style. If you want different parts of your document to stand out, you would apply a different style. For example, if you're using chapter titles you could use Heading 1. The advantage of using styles is if you want to change the font, you would just modify the selected style and the change will be applied to all parts of the document defined by that style. Does this answer your question, or am I missing the point?
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Author

Commented:
Hi Flyster,

According to your definition, it does make sense.  

But, that begs the question - what does "Based on Normal" in the Headings indicate?

For example, I'm pretty sure that if I was using some unique font as normal - Bauhaus 93, for example, then my Headings would inherit that font from the start from that document.

Also, SEVERAL years ago, I read a book that painstakingly went through how to keep Heading Fonts linked to make outlines based on the

Heading 1
Heading 2...

It's the "painstaking" part of the book I remember the most! :p :)))!

Was hoping that, if I was recalling things right, that there was some easy way among Experts.  

Returns us to this point:

Normal, Heading 1, Heading 2 and the rest are each individual styles with their own definitions.

And, what does, Based on Normalmean?

Maybe there is some link?  That's what I was thinking.  

How do you see it?

Just ran a test - using Bauhaus 93! :D  And,  Quote, Intense Quote & List Paragraph all DID change, straightaway, to Bahaus 93 when it was made the Default Font.  But, the Headings remained unchanged.  So...is there any way to get Heading to ALSO do this? (File attached)

Sincerely,

OT
link-styles-to-auto-update-test-201.docx
I need to do a little more research but try this. In that last document you sent, modify Heading 1 to the same font used in Normal (Bauhaus 93 - Font size 11). I checked it on several styles and it appears if the one style has the same  font as in Normal, when Normal is changed, the other styles with that font also changes. I'll check back in the morning!

Paul
This is how Word’s styles were designed to work, so it isn’t a bug — or even an undesirable behavior.

You can see why this is happening if you examine the style definitions. Although the Heading 1 style is based on the Normal style, the definition includes (for example) “Font: (Default) +Headings (Calibri Light), 16 pt, Font color: Accent 1 ...”. The key here is the + because that overrides the font defined for the Normal style.

If you do want the Heading 1 style to inherit the Normal style’s font, you will need to modify the Heading 1 style definition to change the font to match what is being used in the Normal style. That way, any future changes to the font used in Normal will be inherited by the Heading 1 style.

The Modify Style dialog’s summary box shows the differences between the “based on” style and the current style, so the attributes not shown are the ones they will both share. This inheritance behavior can be very useful, and can allow you to create much more flexible sets of styles — and particularly helps with formatting attributes that are invisible or not very obvious.

  • For example, the Normal style usually includes the preferred Language attribute, so if you change it in the Normal style’s definition, all other styles based on Normal will inherit the Language unless specifically overridden. If your document was for a Canadian audience, so needed to use “English (Canada)” instead of “English (United States)” for the spelling and grammar checking, you would only need to make the change once in the Normal style.

If you want to manage the formatting for all related elements, you can alter the “based on” part of each of their style definitions to a standard style. One common method is to have all body-related styles based on Normal (Body Text, Block Text, List Bullet, Quote, etc.), and all heading-related styles based on Heading 1. An alternative would be to create custom styles: for example, a custom paragraph style named “*bodyContent” based on “(no style)” would not be affected by any changes to the Normal style and could contain all of the attributes common to all body-related styles; similarly, a custom “*headingContent” paragraph style could include formatting attributes common to all headings and subheadings. With either method, the style definition summary box would show just the additional formatting attributes from the based-on style — and any change to the based-on style’s definition will be inherited by every style based on it. (I use this latter approach, and choose to precede the custom style names with an asterisk to have them sort to the top rather than be buried among the many other styles starting with B or H.)

Tip for managing styles & formatting: Press Shift-F1 to bring up the "Reveal Formatting panel to show all of the formatting for the current selection. The panel can be docked by dragging it to an edge, and you can turn on the “Distinguish style source” option to have it differentiate between what is coming from the style definition and any direct formatting. But for the purposes of more easily managing style definitions, you can click on any of the blue headings in the pane to get immediate access to the dialog box to change the setting — including the Style dialog.

The screen shot below shows the Reveal Formatting panel as it appeared when I selected the paragraph tagged with the Heading 2 style. All details about the Font and Paragraph formatting are listed, and any of the blue headings can be clicked to provide direct access to the applicable dialog box & tab. In this case, I had clicked the PARAGRAPH STYLE heading to bring up the Style dialog. Clicking the “Modify...” button brought up the Modify Style dialog to allow me to change any of the attributes for the Heading 2 style.Using Reveal Formatting to easily access

Author

Commented:
When I read your message I felt impressed.  Thank you, Eric!!!  Need a day or two to comprehend it and give it a go.  The Double Helix has been revealed! :D!!!

Author

Commented:
T H A N K  Y O U  !  !  !

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