Alignment and Hyphenation

It might be the first time you are in contact with a designer to outsource the layout of a document. You are probably use to aligning text within Microsoft Word. But how do you correctly judge the alignment of a document? Within this article, we will discuss the most important aspects you can check regarding the readability and alignment of your dissertation. The space between words in a sentence is variable. This space is dependent on the alignment of the text. This space between words largely determines the readability. In addition to the alignment, the letter size and line height are also important read more about those aspects in our knowledge base.

Left alignment

In practice the choice in alignment is limited to two options; being justified or left-aligned text. The figure below displays the difference between the two options. In case of left-alignment, the space between words is optimal and always the constant. This ensures a document has a comfortable reading experience. As you can see in the example below.


However, a left-aligned text looks less tidy on first impression as the right side of the text is not a straight line. To create a straight line on both the left and right side of your text you will need to use a justified alignment. Unfortunately, the space between individual words within a justified text is variable dependent on the number of words and the length of words on a line. Resulting in a les comfortable reading experience.


If you would like to have a justified text but do not like the variable spacing between word you could opt not hyphenation. Hyphenation splits up words at the end of a line to make sure the spacing between words stay constant as well as creating a straight line at the right side of your texts, This allows for a more even distribution of space between words, however the distribution is as optimal as in the case of  left alignment


When choosing the alignment of a text you will need to establish your priorities. Would you prefer a comfortable reading to text or a tidy looking text on first impression. Based on your preference you can choose between the aforementioned options.

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