Video: Introduction to form and report layouts

Layouts are guides that help you align and resize controls on forms and reports. In Access 2010, layouts are required for forms and reports that you publish to the Web. But even if you aren't publishing, layouts help you create a clean, professional-looking application. Watch this video to see how to perform basic layout tasks.

In the video


Add controls to a layout

By default, Access automatically places controls in layouts when you create or modify a form or report, including when:

  • You create a new form or report by using one of the commands on the Create tab.
  • You create a blank form or report and then add fields from the Field List task pane, or add controls from the Design tab.

However, if you have a form or report that was created by using earlier versions of Access (or if you have removed controls from a layout), you can use this procedure to create a layout and add the controls to it.

  1. In the Navigation Pane, right-click the form or report to which you want to add the layout, and then click Layout View.
  2. Select the controls that you want to add to the layout. Hold down the SHIFT or CTRL key to select multiple controls.
  3. On the Arrange tab, in the Table group, click Stacked (often used for forms) or Tabular (often used for reports).

Access creates the layout and adds the controls to it. Use the commands on the Arrange tab to make further adjustments to the layout.

Resize a row or column

  1. Select a cell in the row or column that you want to resize. If resizing multiple rows or columns, hold down the SHIFT key and select a cell in each row or column.
  2. Position the pointer over the edge of one of the selected cells, and then click and drag the edge until the cell is the size you want.

Delete a control from a layout

  • Select the control that you want to delete, and then press DELETE.

Access deletes the control. If there was a label associated with the control, Access deletes the label as well.

 Note    Deleting a control from a layout does not delete the underlying row or column in the layout.

Delete a row or column from a layout

  • Right-click a cell in the row or column that you want to delete, and then click Delete Row or Delete Column on the shortcut menu.

Access deletes the row or column, including any controls that were contained in the row or column.

Move a control in a layout

  • To move a control, just drag it to the new location in the layout. Access automatically adds new columns or rows depending on where you drag the control.
  • To move multiple controls, hold down the SHIFT or CTRL key while you select the controls, and then drag them to the new location.

 Note    If you move a control without also moving its associated label (or vice versa), the control and the label will no longer be associated with each other.

Merge cells

To create a larger space for a control, you can merge any number of contiguous empty cells together. Or, you can merge a cell that contains a control with other contiguous empty cells. However, you cannot merge two cells that already contain controls.

  1. Select the cells that you want to merge by holding down the SHIFT or CTRL key while you click each cell.
  2. On the Arrange tab, in the Merge / Split group, click Merge.

Split Cells

Any cell in a layout can be split vertically or horizontally into two smaller cells. If the cell you are splitting contains a control, that control is moved to the left cell (if splitting horizontally) or the upper cell (if splitting vertically) of the two resulting cells.

  1. Select the cell that you want to split. You can only split one cell at a time.
  2. On the Arrange tab, in the Merge / Split group, click Split Vertically or Split Horizontally.