How To Reverse Indent On Google Docs

Google Docs is an incredibly versatile tool, offering a myriad of functions to users. One such function is the ability to adjust and manipulate the indentation of your text, a feature that often goes underutilized due to its seemingly complex nature. However, with a little guidance, you can quickly learn how to use this useful function.

Understanding Reverse Indentation

Before we dig into the how-to, it’s important to understand what a reverse indent is. Simply put, a reverse indent is when all lines of a paragraph are indented except the first line. This is commonly used in bibliographies, works cited pages, or any instance where you want to make the first line of a paragraph stand out.

How to Create a Reverse Indent

Creating a reverse indent in Google Docs is simple. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you navigate through the process:

  1. Open your Google Doc and highlight the paragraph you want to reverse indent.

  2. Click on “Format” in the menu bar at the top of the screen.

  3. Hover over “Align & indent” and then click on “Indentation options”.

  4. In the “Indentation options” window that pops up, look for “Special indent”. Here, you will find two options: “First line” and “Hanging”. Select “Hanging”.

  5. Enter the amount of indentation you want. Google Docs measures indentation in inches. For example, entering “0.5” will reverse indent your paragraph by half an inch.

  6. Click “Apply” and observe the change in your document.


Reverse indentation can be a great asset when formatting your documents in Google Docs. It allows you to give a unique touch to your documents and can be particularly helpful when you’re working on academic papers or any form of formal writing. Remember that, like most features in Google Docs, it’s all about exploring and understanding how to use the tool effectively.