Monday, June 6, 2011

Global Changes vs. Local Changes

This post is an exercise that shows you the difference between global changes (changing a style) and local changes (changing selected text). 
Copy Text
Copy and paste the following paragraphs into a blank Word document, and then save the document with the name Styles. I'm simply trying to give you some text to work with and it doesn't matter what the text says.
  1. Highlight the text below between the following marks *****. 
  2. Hold down the Ctrl key and type c
  3. Open a Word document.
  4. Hold down the Ctrl key and type v. The text appears in your document.
  5. Save your document under the name Styles.
If an Irish immigrant’s dreams include leading the hard, humble life of a farmer, then William C. McKee’s life is a roaring success. William starts life in Ireland. His birth is sometime in 1812. He marries in his early twenties to Susana (or Susannah) Gilmore—probably in 1834. William and Susana have two children in Ireland. Margaret is born in January of 1835, and the Mary Jane is born in Port Norris, County Armagh, Ireland on 11 May 1837. Shortly after Mary Jane’s birth, the family grabs toddler Margaret’s hand, bundles up Mary Jane, and sets sail for America.
The family lives in New York City for a few years. The birth of Sarah—their third child—places the family in New York City as late as 1841. While in New York, William and Susana appear to lose their oldest child Margaret. Next, a land patent places the William McKee family on their Randolph County, Illinois farm by 1842.
While living on the farm, William and Susana have three more children, including William—their only son. In the course of life unfolding on the family farm in Illinois, William and Susana experience a joy that only parents can know. They watch their children grow and they give their older daughters away to happy, prosperous marriages.
As the life of William McKee begins to fade, he has only his wife, son, and youngest daughter at home. William appears with his family on the 1870 census but is gone by the 1880 census. The logical assumption is that he dies. William is buried in the Union Presbyterian Cemetery in Randolph County.
When contrasted with the sometimes dramatic and often loss-filled lives of his siblings, William’s life seems to be one of tranquility and modest prosperity. In spite of the turbulent times in which he lives, he appears to live out a life that must have been close to his immigrant dreams. 
Apply the Body Text style to all of the text.
  1. Display all style (see the post A Style for Every Season in you need help).
  2. Click anywhere in your document, and select all text in your document (Ctrl + A).
  3. Select Body Text from the style list. The Body Text style is applied to all text in your document.
Change the font for the style (a global change).
  1. Right click the Body Text style in the style list. A pop up menu appears. 
  2. Select Modify. The Modify Style dialog appears.
  3. Select a new font from the font field, and then click OK.
You’ve just made a global change; that is, you changed the font for every instance where the Body Text style is applied. You can also make a local change.
Change the font and color for one paragraph (a local change).
  1. Triple click the last paragraph to select the text, or just highlight the text to select it.
  2. Display the Font dialog box. In Word 2003, select Format, and then Font from the menu. In Word 2007/2010, click the Home tab, and then click the arrow in the lower right of the group box.
  3. Pick a new font in the Font field, pick a color in the Color field, and then click OK. The font and color of the text of only the selected paragraph change.
Notes: You can make the same local changes using the buttons and fields above your document. To remove the changes, select the paragraph again, hold down the Ctrl key, and press the spacebar once and then type the letter q. Your text is returned to the Body Text style.
Grrrrr...I'm trying to beat the clock...Google is doing maintenance and I can't upload images. These instructions are pretty easy so I'm going to post them without images. If you get lost, post a comment and I'll post the images or answer questions.
The big thing I want from this post is for you to see what happens when you make a global change or a local change. Having a clear understanding of how the changes are made is important for later discussions.


  1. I am in a Certification course for Microsoft Words . I have learned so much from your blog - not only for my genealogical holdings but in improving my knowledge of the office programs . Please - whatever you do - do not stop writing these things .

    1. Hi Magda--I'm glad you're finding these posts helpful. I try to find all the "stuff" in Word that puzzles people. If someone explains it to you, your life if so much easier. I'll keep plugging along. Word is vast and there are lots of tasks you can do with it. So I can't imagine I'll run out of topics soon.