"Tab+N" our new shortcut to create Sections


Briefly describe (1-2 sentences) the Bug you’re experiencing: Unable to create sections by adding a colon

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Hi Allison and welcome to the forum. Asana just rolled out a change with sections. Great news is that they are now fundamentally different than tasks which will allow for much better functionality in the future. However, they needed to change how the sections are created. Now the shortcut is Tab + N or using the Create Section button at the top of the list. Here is some more information about how sections have changed. Sections are dead! Long live sections!

I hope that helps,


Thanks for jumping in @Katie_Reynolds, merging this post with "Tab+N" our new shortcut to create Sections :wink:


Thank you @Phil_Seeman. I saw that. It helped me form my understanding as to what was happening without seeing it in person yet.

If you allow me to get back on my soapbox for a moment :package:, Paul Reich probably read it too and he still asked why is Asana behaving differently.
Matt and Joe’s posts have been very informative, but they are dense and valuable to those of us that want the painful details.
Where are the posts/information that lay out what has changed clearly and concisely for the sake of the 80% of users that want quick and accessible answers.

Again, I don’t understand why Asana changes their product without explaining clearly to it’s users ahead of time what to expect and why. This user confusion and anxiety could have been mitigated.


Is this shortcut in the UI somewhere? I looked at your documentation (https://asana.com/guide/help/projects/sections) and there is absolutely NO information on how to add a section to a task. This change was rolled out almost a month ago, with zero guidance. I only found out this feature by looking at a project template. I truly hope that Asana’s internal teams are coordinating.


Thanks for reaching out @Richard_Carillo and sincere apologies for the trouble here; we’re working on updating our documentation and I’ll make sure to share them here as soon as they’ll be live.

Thank you so much for your patience and help!


Hi all,

As a frequent user of Asana, I was also confused when the colon stopped creating a new section. I feel I experienced the same amount of user confusion and frustration about a feature that I’ve always used since the beginning.

I searched around and found the same help document and as many others have mentioned, the documentation has not been updated to reflect these changes. I do not recall a notification telling me that this was the new way to go. Also, currently putting the mouse over the Add Section button doesn’t show a keyboard shortcut pop-up either.

Perhaps a little note about how this method of section creation will be discontinued soon is sufficient, until the feature gets rolled out to everyone.

There doesn’t seem to be a way to convert a task to a section. Highlighting a task and pressing Tab+N does not convert that task into a section. It just makes a New Section right under it.

I find this as a huge step backwards in terms of usability and productivity, because users have gotten used to typing their section name as a task, and then adding a colon (:slight_smile: at the end of it to create the section. I found this method of section creation to be super easy and it made a lot of sense. In terms of customer effort (aka people’s hands), it seems like more effort to press Tab+N compared to Shift+Colon.

There is no Add Section button for subtasks. The only current way to Add a Section to the Subtasks is to know about, and use the Tab+N keyboard shortcut.

The Add Section button only works for the main task list and not anywhere else. That’s probably to prevent confusion and what not, but I feel that it would be useful to at least have it in the three dot menu, or somewhere else on the tasks window pane when the task is open as a button.

Also if there’s any more user facing changes to this level, please please make a very clear notification, whether it’s a pop-up next time the user visits Asana, or even a banner with “Important changes: new way to Add Sections!” could be sufficient. Or even identify that a user is trying to use the colon key to make a new Section, pressing enter, then backspacing, then repeating it, then showing up a popup saying “Trying to make a new Section? Use Tab+N instead!” would be way better than what is being done now.


@Marie, I have a question about how UI behavior once a project is migrated to the new sections model. If I have this in My Tasks:

Section 1:
Task 1

Section 2:
Task 2

And I attempt to select everything shown, how many lines will appear selected in the UI and what will appear in the Task Detail Pane? Right now, I’d see this:

4 tasks selected

But after migration, might I instead see:

2 tasks selected

I’m asking if you’ll continue to treat selections of sections as you do now, or will they start to behave more like Today and Upcoming which are unselectable. I’m guessing they’ll continue to be selectable because some of their properties can be changed in the Task Detail pane, but I’d like to confirm this.

(Unrelated: I imagine sections will be presented with some expand/collapse affordance after migration since that feature was promised, but that doesn’t impact upon my question above.)



Hi Larry,

One word of caution: I’m concerned that the fact you used My Tasks for your example might not get you the specific answer you’re looking for.

Remember that My Tasks and subtasks are not included in this sections migration; that is, even after the migration, the dividers we now call sections will, in both My Tasks and subtasks, be called “separators” - they will still be the tasks we know as “sections” today, tasks with a special internal flag on them.

So I’d be willing to bet a bunch of money (OK, maybe just kidding there) that since separators are still tasks, they will continue to be included in the count when you do a multi-select specifically in My Tasks.

But what about the same thing in a regular project? In that case, the section you’re multi-selecting is NOT a task. I don’t know the answer for sure in this case - we need info from Asana - but I’d sure guess that those will NOT be included in the multi-select count since they’re not tasks.

Bottom line is that I think the answer to your question is different when in My Tasks than when in a regular project, and so I thought it might be helpful to make that distinction.


You’re absolutely right, @Phil_Seeman; thanks for pointing that out.

It would be great to get the answer in both of these cases, My Task (new-style separators) and a project (new-style sections).

Thanks again,



@Matt_Bramlage, is this something you can help with?


Why can you no longer convert a task to a section?

The docs still say you can!


Thank you all for your patience and understanding; we’re in the process of updating our Guide articles to reflect this change. Please find below the updated article dedicated to Sections.


@lpb I wish I could answer your question, but I don’t know what multi-select in My Tasks will look like. In fact, we have a big company planning meeting next week to map out the next 6 months of work, so we still are just in the early phases of figuring out what next steps are with sections throughout My Tasks and other parts of Asana after we get past the migration for regular projects.

I can tell you for regular projects that, as currently implemented in our dogfooding, new sections don’t feel like they should be included in multi-select (and they, in fact, aren’t). Part of what is so confusing about this migration is that all sections right now are still task-sections - there are no public testers of our new column-sections yet - and the new column-sections don’t really feel like tasks they way old sections do today. Hopefully when we finally get over this painful bump of a migration everything will feel more natural and make more sense than it does right now, today, when it feels like anything is a possible future state :flushed:

split this topic #83

A post was merged into an existing topic: Create Section feature is missing from the iOS app


I’m still frustrated that there is no way to make a task a section – or make a section back into a task. Removing this functionality completely is pretty unacceptable, and has made some of my projects genuinely unusable because of the way I’ve stored subtasks in sections.


Hey guys, i want to add a section in a taks (in board) but doing this by using a colon is not working anymore. I know how to add a new section in the List but not in a task in a board.

Hope someone can help!


Hello @Margriet, welcome to the Asana Community Forum :confetti_ball:

You can create a new Column in a Board Project by simply clicking on “+ Add Column”. Please find here a screenshot I have taken of what this looks like in my Board Project:

You can also learn more about Board Projects in our handy Guide article here.

I hope this helps, please let me know if this has answered your question!


Hi @Margriet, just to add to @Edda’s comment; we have recently made some changes regarding sections. Adding a colon at the end of a task title doesn’t convert the task into a section anymore, instead you can use the new “Tab+N” shortcut to create sections :slight_smile: If you want to learn more about this recent change, have a look at this post: "Tab+N" our new shortcut to create Sections.


thanks so much guys for your quick reply. Tab N works for me now :slightly_smiling_face: