Table of Contents

by Kendall Callas

Creating a Table of Contents (“ToC”) in WordPerfect for Windows (all versions) is a fairly simple task which involves 4 steps:

  1. Format the ToC page
  2. Define
  3. Mark
  4. Generate

The same 4 steps are used to create a Table of Contents and a Table of Authorities; the Table of Authorities just has a couple more wrinkles. Next month we'll build on this topic and take up the task of creating a Table of Authorities.

1. Format the ToC page

A few initial steps are necessary to adjust the “window dressing”, including a title, the page numbering style, and the initial page number.

Generally, Roman Numerals are used to number the pages of a ToC. Also, assuming you want the ToC at the top of your document, the first problem we encounter is that when we insert a page at the top for the ToC, that would change the page numbering for the following pages. To avoid this, we'll need to specify that the remaining pages restart their page numbering at “1”. Follow these steps to handle those issues:

A. Use Ctrl+Home to move your cursor to the top of the document. Use Ctrl+Enter to force a new page (page break) then tap the Up Arrow key to move your cursor back to page 1. This will be the ToC page, so to select Roman Numerals for page numbering, use Format, Page, Numbering. (Remember, to save time and avoid repetitive stress injury, don't use your mouse: Tap and release the Alt key, then press O, P, N!) In the large rectangle at left labeled “Page numbering format”, use the vertical slider along its right edge to move down through the list of various page numbering styles (or click in the list and press the letter “i”) until you see the one you want, probably either “i” or “-i-”, then click to select it. Once you've clicked the Okay button, you've set Roman Numerals for the ToC page. (This also turns page numbering on, and by default positions it at the bottom center of each page.)

B. Unfortunately, we've set Roman Numerals for all the pages. So, tap the down arrow once to move your cursor to the top of the next page (the first page of the body of your document) and we'll reset the page numbering to regular Arabic Numerals. Once again, use Format, Page, Numbering (Alt, O, P, N) to select the page numbering style you wish, either “2” or “-2-” or maybe “Page 2” — but don't click Okay yet.

C. Here, on the first page of your text, we also need to restart the page numbering at “1”. Still at the “Select Page Numbering Format” screen, click the button labeled “Set Value” at lower right. Type the number “1”, then press Enter. Click Okay and we've successfully set the page numbering.

D. Tap the Up Arrow key to move back to the ToC page. We're ready to type the title. As desired, use center (Shift+F7), bold (Ctrl+B), and caps to type “TABLE OF CONTENTS” and press Enter two or three times.

2. Define the ToC Location and Structure

Use Tools, Reference, Table of Contents to bring up the ToC feature bar. (In WP7, use Tools, Generate, Table of Contents; in WP6.x, use Tools, Table of Contents) Note the new buttons that now appear just above your document, ending at the right with “Define”, “Generate”, and “Close”.

With your cursor one or two lines below “TABLE OF CONTENTS”, click the “Define” button to begin the ToC definition. Mainly all we need do at the “Define Table of Contents” screen is set the number of ToC levels. “Levels” refers to how many sub-entries are allowed beneath each main ToC entry. Sub-entries are indented, and logically subsidiary to the main entry/level. (Play with the number of levels as you watch the mockup ToC in the rectangle below.) I recommend you simply specify the maximum number of 5 levels; this allows you the flexibility of using 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 levels — there is no disadvantage to specifying more than you need.

When you click the Okay button, note the marker inserted at the cursor position: “<< Table of Contents will generate here >>”

3. Mark Headings

Now you must mark each heading in the document that you wish to appear in the ToC:

A. Select the heading. For most headings, the easiest way is to use your mouse and click 3 times (to select a line or sentence). For more control, position your cursor at the beginning of the heading, hold down the Shift key then press the End key. (Or try F8, to turn on Select, then press Enter to extend the highlighting to the next HRt.)

Avoid including tabs, HRts, and bold/italic/underline or other codes within the text you select for a ToC entry — they will be copied into the ToC and may disrupt your format.

B. Click a “Mark #” button. If it's a main heading, click “Mark 1”. If it's a subsidiary heading, click “Mark 2”, “Mark 3”, “Mark 4”, or “Mark 5”, as appropriate.

C. Regarding strategy, you may mark the headings as you type the document, or you may find it less vulnerable to missing one if you do all the marking after the document is finalized, proceeding top to bottom.

D. If text containing headings has been copied from other documents, ToC codes may have been copied as well; to avoid problems, you may want to check the document before marking: Use Find and Replace/F2 (then Match, Codes) to search for “Mrk Txt T.O.C Begin” codes and replace them with nothing.

4. Generate the Table

A. After marking some or all of the headings, you are ready to create the ToC. Click the “Generate” button near the top right of your screen. (It doesn't matter where your cursor is when you do this.) This will copy all the headings you marked from the document into the ToC page, along with their page numbers.

B. You will need to regenerate the ToC if any marked heading is changed, or if enough text is added or deleted to the document to shift a heading onto a different page.

C. To remove the ToC feature bar, click the “Close” button at the right edge.

A Note About Editing the ToC page: Don't! You may edit the title or format the whole page, but don't waste time editing the text of the ToC entries. The headings copied into the ToC (between the [Gen Txt] codes visible in Reveal Codes on each side of the “<< Table of Contents will generate here >>” marker) are deleted and re-created each time the ToC is generated. Any edits you make to the ToC entries on the ToC page will be lost when you regenerate.

Next month: Table of Authorities!

Copyright (C) 2002 by microCounsel. All rights reserved.

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