How To: Change the size of point symbols in the legend without changing the size on the map


When maps have different layers, it is possible to display map symbology in a smaller size than usual to ensure all symbols are visible when the map is viewed. Since the size of map symbology is carried over in the legend when it is added to the map in the Layout view, the information provided in the legend may not be clear because the size of the symbols are too small.

This article provides instructions to change the size of point symbols in the legend while maintaining the size on the map, without converting the legend to graphics.


  1. In ArcMap, make a copy of the layer, and turn off the map visibility for the copied layer in Table Of Contents.
  2. In the Layout view, go to Insert > Legend to add a legend to the map using Legend Wizard.
  3. In Legend Wizard, insert the copied layer in the Legend Items list box, and remove the original layer. Click Finish to close Legend Wizard after setting the legend title properties, customizing the legend frame, and specifying the spacing between legend elements.
  4. Double-click the legend in the Layout view to open the Legend Properties dialog box.
  5. On the General tab, uncheck the Only display layers that are checked on in the Table Of Contents option, and click Apply > OK.
Screenshot of the Legend Properties dialog box
  1. In Table Of Contents, click the point symbol under the name of the copied layer to open the Symbol Selector dialog box.
  2. Adjust the point size in the Symbol Selector dialog box accordingly to display the desired point symbol size in the legend. For more information, refer to ArcMap: A quick tour of symbol and styles. The image below shows the size of the point symbol in the legend is displayed larger than the points on the map.
Screenshot of the difference in size of the point symbol in the legend and on the map

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