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Landscape Orientation & Page Numbers

“How do I rotate my pages to landscape orientation and adjust my page numbers?”

The first step in rotating pages is to isolate the pages in question. This is done by creating section breaks which allow isolated structural changes to a specifically-limited number of pages independently of the rest of the document. In other words, structural changes made to the section containing the pages to be rotated will not be reflected in the two sections immediately preceding and following it.

Step 1) Create section breaks.

When you create a section break, it is placed on the line where your cursor is positioned, usually at the end of the text on the page or at the end of the page itself.

In order to rotate pages to landscape orientation, you will need to create two breaks: one on the page that precedes the pages to be rotated, and one on the page (or the last of multiple pages) to be rotated.

Layout tab > Page Setup group > Breaks function

Most of the time, you'll want to choose Next Page. This will ensure that pagination continues sequentially across sections.

Page and section breaks menu
New section break

Step 2) Unlink the sections from one another, isolating the section to be rotated.

This should happen twice, once for the header and once for the footer.

Double-click the header or footer > Header & Footer Tools ribbon menu > Design tab > Navigation group > Deactivate the Link to Previous toggle (so that it is not highlighted)

What this does is further isolate the sections by allowing running elements (document-length headers and footers, pagination) to be modified or manipulated independently of proceeding and following elements. This will allow you to remove page numbers before you rotate your page without affecting the page numbers on other pages and sections.

Link to Previous toggle

Step 3) Remove the page numbers from the pages to be rotated.

Page numbers will be re-inserted after page rotation.

Step 4) Rotate the section of pages from portrait to landscape.

Margins should adapt to the page rotation with the 1.5" margin now on top and all other margins 1" (bottom, left, and right).

Layout tab > Page Setup group > Orientation control > Landscape orientation
Page orientation option

Step 5) Re-insert your page numbers.

Insert tab > Header & Footer group > Page Number tool > Page Margins control > Border, Left option
Re-insert page numbers in border

Step 6) Format the new page numbers.

Your page numbers are now in place, however there is some further formatting to adjust.

  1. The automatic bottom border needs to be removed…

    Select the page number itself. It will be contained within a text box. With the contents of the text box selected, go to Home tab > Paragraph group > Borders control > No border option
    Text box border options
  2. …and the page number itself needs to be rotated according to page orientation.

    Drawing Tools ribbon menu > Format tab > Text group > Text Direction control > Rotate all text 90° option
    Text box text rotation options

Continue working with your content.

Once you have completed all of these steps, you can continue working on the rest of your document. If you were to print and rotate the newly landscaped pages by 90° counter-clockwise, you would see that the page numbers are now in the same orientation as the rest of the document, which is in accordance with the regulations and guidelines outlined by the School of Graduate Studies.


  1. Create section breaks and un-link them from the preceding and following sections.
  2. Remove the page numbers, and rotate the page or section to landscape orientation.
  3. Re-insert your page numbers and adjust the formatting.
  4. Add, format, adjust, or modify your content (tables, charts, figures, graphics) accordingly, continuing to follow the boundaries of the page margins.