Markdown is a lightweight and easy-to-use syntax for styling all forms of writing on the GitHub platform.

What you will learn:

  • How the Markdown format makes styled collaborative editing easy
  • How Markdown differs from traditional formatting approaches
  • How to use Markdown to format text
  • How to leverage GitHub’s automatic Markdown rendering
  • How to apply GitHub’s unique Markdown extensions

What is Markdown?

Markdown is a way to style text on the web. You control the display of the document; formatting words as bold or italic, adding images, and creating lists are just a few of the things we can do with Markdown. Mostly, Markdown is just regular text with a few non-alphabetic characters thrown in, like # or *.

You can use Markdown most places around GitHub:

  • Gists
  • Comments in Issues and Pull Requests
  • Files with the .md or .markdown extension

For more information, see “Writing on GitHub” in the GitHub Help.

Syntax guide

Here’s an overview of Markdown syntax that you can use anywhere on or in your own text files.


# This is an <h1> tag
## This is an <h2> tag
###### This is an <h6> tag


*This text will be italic*
_This will also be italic_

**This text will be bold**
__This will also be bold__

_You **can** combine them_