How to Double Space in Google Docs: Step-by-Step Guide

Double spacing is a common formatting style used to increase readability and provide space for edits, comments, or annotations. In Google Docs, applying double spacing is a simple process, but understanding the different methods and considerations can be helpful. 

What is Double Spacing?

Double spacing refers to adding two line spaces between lines of text instead of the default single space. This creates a more visually spacious document, improving readability and making it easier to add comments or edits.

Why Double Space in Google Docs?

There are several reasons why you might want to double space a document in Google Docs:

  • Improved Readability: Double spacing makes the text appear less dense and more visually appealing, which can improve reading comprehension and reduce eye fatigue, especially for long documents.
  • Easier Editing and Feedback: The additional space between lines allows for easier insertion of comments, annotations, and edits, making the review and revision process more efficient.
  • Formatting Requirements: Certain academic institutions, professional settings, or style guides may require double spacing for formal submissions.

When to Use Double Spacing

While double spacing offers several benefits, it’s not always necessary. Here are some instances where double spacing is typically used:

  • Formal Papers and Reports: Double spacing is often required for academic papers, research reports, and other formal documents.
  • Legal Documents: Contracts, agreements, and other legal documents often utilize double spacing for clarity and adherence to specific formatting guidelines.
  • Manuscripts and Creative Writing: Many authors prefer double spacing for manuscripts and creative writing projects to facilitate editing and feedback.

Applying Double Spacing in Google Docs

Double spacing in Google Docs can be applied to the entire document, specific paragraphs, or selected text. Here’s how:

Identifying the Target Text:

  1. Double Spacing Entire Document: If you want to double space the entire document, no specific selection is needed. Simply proceed to the next step.
  2. Double Spacing Specific Paragraphs: Click and drag your cursor to select the specific paragraphs you want to double space.
  3. Double Spacing Selected Text: Double-click on a word to select it, or drag your cursor across the desired text to highlight it.

Changing Line Spacing:

Using the Toolbar Buttons:

  1. Locate the Line spacing button on the toolbar. It looks like two horizontal lines with arrows pointing down.
  2. Click the Line spacing button and choose Double from the drop-down menu.

Using the “Format” Menu:

  1. Go to the Format menu at the top of the screen.
  2. Select Line & paragraph spacing.
  3. Choose Double from the available spacing options.
how to double space in google docs

Using Keyboard Shortcuts (Optional):

  • For Windows: Ctrl+Alt+2
  • For Mac: Option+Cmd+2

Setting Custom Spacing (Optional):

  1. Follow steps 1 and 2 from the “Using the ‘Format’ Menu” method.
  2. Select Custom spacing at the bottom of the drop-down menu.
  3. Enter the desired spacing size (in points) in the “Before” and “After” fields.
  4. Click Apply.

Additional Tips and Considerations:

  • Checking Double Spacing: After applying double spacing, ensure it has been applied correctly. You can do this by scrolling through the document and visually checking the line spacing.
  • Formatting Different Styles with Double Spacing: If your document uses different styles (e.g., headings, block quotes), you can apply double spacing to each style individually using the same methods.
  • Troubleshooting Common Issues: If you’re facing issues with double spacing, such as inconsistent spacing or formatting errors, try clearing Google Docs’ formatting cache or restarting your browser.
  • Resources for Further Learning: For more information on double spacing and formatting styles, you can refer to the Google Docs Help Center or other online resources.

How To Adjust Margins In Google Docs: Simple Guide


Double spacing is a valuable formatting tool in Google Docs that can improve readability, facilitate editing, and meet specific formatting requirements. By understanding the various methods and considerations outlined in this guide, you can confidently apply double spacing to your documents and achieve the desired results.

Final Notes and Questions

Remember, double spacing is just one aspect of document formatting. It’s crucial to consider the overall context and purpose of your document when deciding whether or not to double space.

If you have any questions or need further assistance with double spacing in Google Docs, please feel free to leave a comment below.

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