How to Make Dot Leaders in InDesign

By Elle Smith

Dot leaders are most typically seen in a table of contents. If you're creating a book, manuscript or large document in InDesign, adding a dot leader between columns of text in a table of contents aligns the text and makes the document look professional. InDesign's tabbing feature allows you to create dot leaders with up to eight characters each time you press the "Tab" key.

Step 1

Create a new InDesign document. Select the Text tool from the Tool palette. Type the line of text you want to add the dot leader to.

Step 2

Select "Type and Tables," and then scroll to "Tabs" from the "Windows" menu. A tab ruler will appear above your line of text.

Step 3

Click the tab markers in the tab panel above the rule. Slide the tab to the measurement on the ruler where you want the leader to tab over to. Type a series of dots in the "Leader" text field. You can enter as many as eight dots.

Step 4

Place the text cursor at the point you want the dot leader to begin, and then press the "Tab" key on your keyboard. The cursor will tab over to the measurement on the ruler where you placed the tab marker. The tab function will create the pattern of dots you entered in the "Leader" text field.