Style separators let you have Table of Contents (TOC) entries that use only part of the heading text or text that doesn’t look like a heading. It gives you a lot more flexibility to choose the document formatting you want and not be forced into Word’s standard formatting.
Style Separators are a useful trick in Word that’s been forgotten, seemingly even by Microsoft itself!
Legal users need style separators because some documents have to be in a specific format, but that formatting doesn’t fit well with Word’s Table of Contents feature.
Forgotten by Microsoft?
Office Watch reader, Jane B reminded us about Word’s style separators and noted that you can’t find them mentioned in Word’s own help. She’s right, check out these results from ‘Tell me …’ and Help in Word 2016.
Even typing in the exact name of the Word feature won’t get any useful results from Word 2016!
It’s not much better in Word 365. Clicking the Best Action ‘Style Separator’ does nothing.
Style Separators can be inserted from the Quick Access Toolbar.
It’s listed under ‘Style Separator’ not ‘Insert Style Separator’.
As you can see, the Style Separator has an in-built shortcut Ctrl + Alt + Enter/Return.
However, that shortcut might conflict with some other programs, so the Quick Access Toolbar option might be necessary.