Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Alignment and Orientation
Formatting Cell
Appearance
the bottom edge of the row header (the numbered cell on the left side of the
worksheet), and drag it up or down. As you resize the row, the content stays fixed at the
bottom. The vertical alignment setting lets you adjust the cell content’s positioning.
Excel gives you the following vertical alignment choices, some of which are shown
in Figure 16-9:
Top tells Excel that the first line of text should start at the top of the cell.
Center tells Excel to center the block of text between the top and bottom border
of the cell.
Bottom tells Excel that the last line of text should end at the bottom of the cell.
If the text doesn’t fill the cell exactly, then Excel adds some padding to the top.
Justify is the same as Top for a single line of text. When you have more than one
line of text, Excel increases the spaces between each line so that the text fills the
cell completely from the top edge to the bottom edge.
Distributed is the same as Justify for multiple lines of text. If you have a single
line of text, this is the same as Center.
Figure 16-9:
Left: Horizontal
alignment options in
action.
Right: This sheet
shows how vertical
alignment and cell
wrapping work with
cell content.
If you have a cell containing a large amount of text, you may want to increase the
row’s height so you can display multiple lines. Unfortunately, you’ll notice that
enlarging a cell doesn’t automatically cause the text to flow into multiple lines and fill
the newly available space. But there’s a simple solution: just turn on the “Wrap text”
checkbox (on the Alignment tab of the Format Cells dialog box). Now, long passages
of text flow across multiple lines. You can use this option in conjunction with the
vertical alignment setting to control whether Excel centers a block of text, or lines it
up at the bottom or top of the cell. Another option is to explicitly split your text into
lines. Whenever you want to insert a line break, just press Alt+Enter, and then start
typing the new line.
Tip: After you’ve expanded a row, you can shrink it back by double-clicking the bottom edge of the row
header. Assuming you haven’t turned on text wrapping, this action shrinks the row back to its standard
single-line height.
 
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