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Great responses so far from everyone!

Dan, I like your idea of giving the students a project of doing a complex document with and without styles.


-----Original Message----- From: Dan Lewis
Sent: Monday, April 29, 2013 4:21 PM
Subject: Re: [libreoffice-users] Paragraph styles

On 04/29/2013 03:52 PM, T. R. Valentine wrote:
On 29 April 2013 13:00, Virgil Arrington <> wrote:
I'd like to get some general opinions about paragraph styles.
I am a huge fan of paragraph styles, page styles, and character
styles. I wish they were more widely used.

It makes me wonder if there is a way to make them more accessible to people
less inclined to invest time in their technology as opposed to getting a
task done.
What I find useful when teaching about styles is to emphasise two
things: how it makes it easy to change the formatting of something
like section titles (change the style and all occurrences are changed)
and that by using styles a consistent look-and-feel is created which
makes documents look more professional.

T. R. Valentine
Your friends will argue with you. Your enemies don't care.
'When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food
and clothes.' -- Erasmus

     I have been using paragraph styles in specific and many of the
styles in the Styles and Formatting Window. So much so that I dock this
window at the left side of Writer. This goes back to OOo 1.02 as I was
writing the Getting Started with Base Chapter in the Getting Started
Guide. I extensively use list styles along with the associated paragraph
styles. I have even modified the list styles to make them do what I want.
     Recently, I have been using Calibre to convert my writings to the
ePUB format. The latter uses a style sheet for its formatting. Because
the conversion from ODF to ePUB is not perfect, my experiences with
styles permits me to make the changes I need in the ePUB style sheet.
     I also agree with a previous poster: templates are very important
when using styles. I have 16 templates many of which that I have created
and use. Each one contains its own set of styles (paragraph, character,
lists, and page). A couple of them are for resumes that are suppose to
be quite professional. I seem to remember a law firm had created its own
template for their legal briefs to make sure its structure was exactly
what was expected.
      Obviously, templates can take time to create. But once created,
they can be real time savers. The only way I know to teach the
importance of templates and styles is to have the students create a
template with a complex layout using styles. Then have them create two
papers with this layout without the use of styles. Then have them make
two papers with this layout using the template. Let them determine which
takes the least amount of time. Finally have them make a change in one
of these papers by changing a style and then by changing things
manually. See if they can even make all of the changes manually.
     Just some thoughts.


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