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What are headings?  

A heading is a type of semantic text formatting. Using heading styles goes beyond just visually formatting the text to be bigger or bolded. A heading is very similar to a title in that it gives insight into the information that will be presented, but a heading solely captions a specific section of your document – not necessarily the whole thing. Headings should be used in hierarchical order like the example below.

What does proper heading formatting look like?

Heading 1: Examples of Different Headings in a Syllabus 

Heading 2: Basic Course Information 

Heading 3: Course Description 

Heading 3: Course Prerequisites  

Heading 3: Course Objectives 

Heading 2: Instructor Information 

Heading 2: Course Policies  

Heading 3: Attendance Policy 

Heading 3: Grading Policy 

Heading 4: Feedback 

Heading 4: Late Work Policy 

Heading 2: Course Schedule 

Why should we use headings? 

Headings make a document easier to navigate, especially for individuals who use screen readers. Headings provide structure to the document, allowing everyone access to search for specific sections and content without having to read the entire document. Screen readers do not recognize the use of bold, italics, and color to distinguish different sections of a document, so it is important to use heading styles rather than just bold or enlarge the font.  

How do I create headings? 

Create headings in Microsoft Word  

    1. Select the text you want to style as a heading. 
    2. Under the Home tab, click on the specific heading type you want to use in the Styles gallery.  

Example of how to create a header using the Styles tool in MS Word.

Tip: You can customize your preferred heading styles in Microsoft Word (opens new window) to save time and keep your documents consistent.  

Create headings in D2L’s HTML Editor 

    1. While editing the HTML file, select the text you want to style as a heading.  
    2. Locate the Format dropdown on the left-hand side of the tool bar.  
    3. Click on the specific heading type you want to use.  

Example of how to create headings in D2L HTML editor.