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How to insert non-standard English characters into almost any text

text including eth and thorn in wordToday we’re going to learn how to insert non-standard English characters into Word and pretty well anywhere else where you might want to type some text.

What do I mean by non-standard English characters? I mean those characters that do not appear in a standard English alphabet, i.e. diacritics (letters with accents that you find in most European accents) and additional letters you don’t find in English, such as the eth and thorn found in Icelandic.

I’ll show you how to insert these in Word in a couple of different ways, and then share the best and most simple universal way to create these characters, as well as the special codes for some of my favourites.

Why would I want to type non-standard characters?

There are many reasons why you might want to type non-standard characters in your English documents / text / fields / whatever. Here are some of the reasons why I’ve done this myself:

  • As a cataloguer (and this is where I learnt about them and memorised some of the codes), I was required to catalogue in different languages, or enter people’s names which had accents on various letters into author fields.
  • I have a client called Jörg. He has to spell it Joerg in his email address and email signature. I prefer to be polite and spell it in the correct way when I email him and say “Hello Jörg”.
  • I’ve just been to Iceland. If I’m talking about places I’ve been or things I’ve read, I want to be able to use the full range of Icelandic letters – and they have two extra ones that we don’t use (nowadays) in English.
  • I work with bibliographies which might include non-English words with accents, etc. – if I need to add something or make a correction, it’s handy to know how to add the correct characters.

In many of these cases, I’m typing in a Tweet, a special piece of software or an email, as well as using Word for some of them. Many people know how to insert special characters in Word, but not everyone knows about the codes that you can use to pepper all of your communications with nice non-standard characters.

I’ll talk about Word first, and then broaden things out.

How do I insert special characters into my Word document?

There are two ways to insert special characters into a Word document. If you know the Alt-code for the letter, you can just hit Alt and a special four-figure number. More about that later on.

The official way is to Insert Character. This is how you do it (this works for all versions of Word for PC).

When you get to the place where you want to insert your special character, in this case an é at the end of café, go to the Insert tab (or menu in Word 2003) and choose Symbol from the Symbols area on the right:

Insert symbol word

When you press the Symbol button, a selection of commonly used symbols will appear (this will give you symbols that you’ve recently used; however, it will carefully offer you a range of popular ones if you’ve not used this method to insert very many symbols in the past). The one I want isn’t there:inserting symbols

 

You can now click on More Symbols to bring up the whole range:

More symbols in wordAt this point, a box including lots of symbols and special characters will pop up:

choice of symbols in word

You can now scroll down to find your symbol. Most of the common ones are on this default list. Here’s my acute e …

Selecting a symbol in word

And once I’ve pressed the Insert button, it will appear in my text.

It’s worth noting at this stage that a list of your recently viewed symbols is displayed in this window, and you can click on any of those and insert them in the same way. Word populates this with common symbols if you haven’t used this method to insert many symbols before (I personally use a different method), but as you use different ones, they will appear here and on that pop-up that appears when you initially click on Symbol (see above):

recently viewed symbols

One more thing to note before we press Insert: this screen also displays character codes. These are codes that you can use in conjunction with other codes and keys, including the Alt key method that I mentioned above. Drop down the arrow by From to get to ASCII and you will find a very useful four-figure code that you can use with Alt to insert non-standard characters into anywhere, not just Word.

Symbol codes

So, that’s how you insert a non-standard character in Word. What if you want to put one in Facebook, Twitter, etc?

How to use the character map on your computer to insert special characters

There is a character map on your computer that you can use to insert special, non-standard characters into any typing that you’re doing that will support these. Note that this works for a PC.

How do you access the character map? Hit the Start button in the bottom left-hand corner of your screen (in Windows 95 onwards and Windows 8.1, Windows 8 doesn’t have one but you can use the Win-R shortcut below), then choose Accessories / System Tools / Character Map:

Character map

You can also use this handy shortcut: Hit the Windows button on your keyboard and R together

windows key

or the Start button and Run and type Charmap into the box that appears:

Run charmap

However you get to it, you should see the character map, which looks like this:

character map

This looks a lot like the map in Word, and works in a similar but not identical way. Find the character you want, scrolling down or changing font if necessary. Click on it until it is highlighted (pops out of the box as below). Press Select and it will appear in the Characters to copy box below the grid.

character map select character

Once it’s been Selected, you will need to Copy it by pressing the Copy button (note: this means that you can select several characters in a row, if you have two non-traditional characters next to each other, for example). Copy will copy everything in the Characters to copy box.

character map copy

Note also here that in the bottom right you are given the keystroke or ASCII code Alt+0233 which you can use as a keyboard shortcut (more on that again later).

Once you’ve copied your character, you can paste it into pretty much any text box you want to, here in Twitter:

Inserting character into Twitter

 Using ASCII codes / keyboard shortcuts / Alt+ to insert special characters

The way I insert special and non-standard characters is to use these Alt+ ASCII keyboard shortcut codes that I’ve been mentioning all the way through this post. Hit Alt-0233 and you’ll get an é without having to click all over the screen, copy and paste. There’s a code for almost every character you could think of.

How do I know a load of these off by heart? Because I used to be a cataloguer at a library, and one of the things I did was catalogue foreign language publications, which were full of diacritics and non-standard characters. So, every day I would end up needing to insert many of these characfers into the cataloguing program we used. I, and everyone else, had little handwritten notes of the ones we used regularly. Here’s mine (yes, when I left the library in December 2011 to do this Libro stuff and blogging full time, I took my little bit of paper with me):

Alt+ codes notes

So there’s a little bit of Liz history you weren’t expecting (ignore the MARC codes at the bottom unless you’re a librarian, too). You, too, can have a bit of paper like this if you use non-traditional characters a lot – or you’ll commit them to memory, as I ended up doing.

How can I find out the ASCII codes for special characters?

You can use one of the two methods I describe above:

  • In Word: Insert – Symbol, drop down From to change it to ASCII and note the Character code
  • In Character Map: click on the symbol and look at the bottom right of the dialog box

or you can search for it online …

In this post, we’ve learned why we might use special characters and how to insert special characters in Word, Twitter, Facebook and any other places that you might want to insert text. If you liked this or found it useful, do please comment below and/or use the sharing buttons to share it! Thank you!

Related posts on this blog:

ASCII codes for common special characters

 
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Posted by on July 23, 2014 in Short cuts, Word, Writing

 

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How do I display the top and side rulers in Word?

The top and side rulers in Word are used to set your margins, and also any Indents you might require for your paragraphs. They should display by default. If they don’t, here are instructions on how to make them display.

If you can’t see the rulers, click on the View Ruler button at the top of your right-hand scroll bar:

view ruler in word

This will display both of your rulers, and you can use the sliders to adjust your margins:

Rulers display in word

To turn off the rulers, simply press that button again, and they will disappear!

Other relevant articles on this blog:

Indents and Margins.

I hope you’ve found these hints helpful! Do share or pop a comment on this post if I’ve helped you learn something new or solved a tricky problem for you, and do explore the rest of my blog if this is your first visit!

Please note, these hints work with versions of Microsoft Word currently in use – Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013 all for PC. Mac compatible versions of Word should have similar options. Always save a copy of your document before manipulating it. I bear no responsibility for any pickles you might get yourself into!

This is part of my series on how to avoid time-consuming “short cuts” and use Word in the right way to maximise your time and improve the look of your documents. Find all the short cuts here

 

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How do I change from having a gap between paragraphs to indenting them?

I’ve written this post because one of my clients just asked me how to do exactly this. She had a document where the paragraphs had an automatic line space between them, and no indent (because I’d produced the document and that’s how I like to lay out paragraphs), and she wanted to change it to have no line space between paragraphs, and the first line of the paragraph indented.

This article draws on two that I’ve already published, so for more detail, you might want to look at my posts on The Line Space Button and Indents and Margins. But what you’ll find here is a quick guide to changing your paragraph format from spaces between paragraphs to indented paragraphs (and vice versa). Note that although they all look a little different, this works for Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013 for PC.

How to remove automatic spacing between paragraphs

There are many reasons to remove automatic spacing between paragraphs. To mention a rather obscure reason, I produce transcriptions to accompany a client’s YouTube videos. The formatting for these requires that a manual line space is added between paragraphs, but my version of Word adds these automatic spaces as a default, so I have to take them out.

Here’s what a document with automatic line spacing between paragraphs looks like:

Paragraphs with automatic spacing

To remove the spaces, first of all you need to highlight all of the text where you’re going to change the format. This is best done by going to the Home tab, then going to the Edit area on the right and clicking on Select:

select all text in word

Once you’ve clicked on Select, you will get a choice of options which includes Select All. Click on this and your whole text will be highlighted:

option for select allOnce the text is all highlighted, making sure you don’t click on the text (which will deselect it), staying in the Home tab, go to the Paragraph section in the middle of the ribbon and click on the Line Spacing button, which looks like this:

line space button

remove space after paragraph

If you have automatic spaces between paragraphs, one of the two bottom options will read Remove Space Before/After Paragraph. In this case it’s after. Click on that option (and it will change to Add Space After Paragraph).

This will have the effect of removing the line spaces between your paragraphs:

paragraphs with no line space in between

How do I indent my paragraphs?

Keeping the text highlighted (or re-selecting All if you’ve accidentally clicked and lost the selection), move below the Ribbon to look at the rulers in your top margin.

(If you can’t see the rulers, click on the View Ruler button at the top of your right-hand scroll bar:)

view ruler in word

Once you can see your rulers, move only the top half of the left-hand margin marker rightwards across the page until you reach the indent position that you want:

setting indent in word

This will give you indented paragraphs with no line spaces between them!

indented paragraphs

Done! To get from indented paragraphs to paragraphs with gaps between them, you just need to reverse this process …

Other relevant articles on this blog:

The Line Space Button

Indents and Margins.

I hope you’ve found these hints helpful! Do share or pop a comment on this post if I’ve helped you learn something new or solved a tricky problem for you, and do explore the rest of my blog if this is your first visit!

Please note, these hints work with versions of Microsoft Word currently in use – Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013 all for PC. Mac compatible versions of Word should have similar options. Always save a copy of your document before manipulating it. I bear no responsibility for any pickles you might get yourself into!

This is part of my series on how to avoid time-consuming “short cuts” and use Word in the right way to maximise your time and improve the look of your documents. Find all the short cuts here

 

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How to change your editing language in Word 2013, Word 2010 and Word 2007

This post is linked to my one on changing the language of your document in Word, however I’ve split them up to avoid screenprint overload.

Incidentally, this process also solves the problem of the language not appearing in the lower status bar of your Word document. This language note will only appear if you have more than one language set as the editing language in Word options.

Why would I want to change my editing language?

The main thing I’ve used this for is to force the language to appear, thus be changeable, in the lower status bar of my Word document. However, it’s also used if you are intending on loading alternative alphabets into your version of Word, if you want to use it for Chinese or Russian, for example.

How do I change my editing language in Word 2013?

This is done in Word Options. Find your Word Options by clicking the File tab:

Finding Word Options in Word 2013

Now choose Options:

Word Options Word 2013 2010

Within the Word Options window, choose Language:

Word Options Language

Look at the Choose Editing Languages section. You can see that only English (United Kingdom) is on the list at the moment. Click on the dropdown arrow by Add additional editing languages:

Choose editing language Word

Select your editing language from the list …

Choosing editing language Word

Once it’s selected, click the Add button:

Adding editing language Word

Now English (United States) has been added to the list – press the OK button at the bottom of the window:

Editing language added Word

What else can I change in the language section?

You will notice that you can also change the display and screentip languages on this screen, as well as asking Word to prompt you if you need to download any special proofing tools. This is useful if someone who only speaks a different language to the default is going to be using this copy of Word (of course, this is all changing this individual copy of Word and does not affect the document if it’s opened on different computers).

Making the changes take effect

You will now be prompted to Restart Word in order for the change to take effect. Press the OK button and close and re-open Word.

Restart Word

This process has the incidental effect of displaying the language of your document in the lower status bar in your copy of Word – and this is the way to make it display if it doesn’t do so initially.

Language displayed on lower status bar

How do I change the editing language in Word 2010?

Good news – the method of changing the editing language in Word 2010 is almost the same as in Word 2013 (above). The Word Options menu just appears slightly differently, in different colours and a slightly different layout.

Click on the File tab and then choose Options.

Word Options Word 2010

From now on, the process is exactly the same as for Word 2013 (above).

How do I change the editing language in Word 2007?

The process for changing the editing language is a bit different for Word 2007.

Access Word Options by clicking on the Office Button in the top left, then clicking on Word Options at the bottom of the window:

Word Options Word 2007

Stay on the Popular screen that comes up first, and click on Language Settings at the bottom of this screen:

Word 2007 change language

Now you have the option to enable and disable editing languages. Click on the language you want to add in the list on the left and press the Add button. Then click OK.

13 language Word 2007

In this article, we have learned how to change the editing language in Word 2013, Word 2010 and Word 2007. Do comment or use the buttons below to share if you’ve found this useful. Many thanks to Krys Williams for her help.

Related posts in this blog

How to change the language of your document in Word

How to change the language of comments

Please note, these hints work with versions of Microsoft Word currently in use – Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013, all for PC. Mac compatible versions of Word should have similar options. Always save a copy of your document before manipulating it. I bear no responsibility for any pickles you might get yourself into!

Find all the short cuts here

 
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Posted by on June 18, 2014 in Word

 

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How to change the language of your Word 2007, 2010 or 2013 document

This article tells you how to change the language of your document in Word 2007, 2010 or 2013.

Why would I want to change the language of my Word document?

The language that is set for your Word document sets the language in which the spelling and grammar checks work. If you are working, say, at a university that uses UK English, and you use a version of Word that’s set for US English, when you run a spell check (or if you ask Word to highlight errors as you go along), the spelling will default to American English. You will submit your document in the incorrect version of the language. This can really matter if you’re instructed to use one particular version, and will matter more as you move into submitting articles for journals (which may specify either version of English) or working for a company that uses British or American spelling as standard.

If you’re working in the field of localisation, or even just, as I used to, writing documents for the US and UK markets simultaneously, making sure that the language set for your document matches the language you’re working in means that you can run final checks and make sure that you’re using the appropriate spelling.

If your document has come from another country which uses a language other than English, for example if you’re working on a document prepared by a translator working out of their own language, you really need to change the language to English before you start editing it, or when you run a final spell check, every word will be highlighted and confusion will ensue.

So it’s important to make sure that the language of your document matches the language in which you wish to work. I receive many documents to proofread which are set for US English but are for a student at a UK university – a quick set of actions is all that it takes, but I fear that students will be penalised if they use the inappropriate spellings for the context.

How do I view and change the language in my document?

In Word, the language that is set for your document should appear in the lower status bar of your document:

1 language on status bar

From here, you can easily change the language of selected text or the whole document (see below). But first we’ll look at how to add this useful display if it’s not showing.

How do I make the language display on my status bar?

If the language isn’t showing on your status bar and you want to see it there, right-click anywhere on the lower status bar. A menu should appear with lots of options to tick. Any item that is ticked will appear on the status bar – this is also useful if you want to view your word count there.

2 add language on status bar

Click on Language or tick the tick-box next to it, and your language will appear for ever more in the bottom status bar.

This works exactly the same for Word 2007, 2010 and 2013.

How do I change the language using the status bar display?

First you need to highlight the text whose language you want to change.

You might want to highlight parts of the document (for example if it’s a dual translation in two languages and you just want to set one to UK English, or it’s a localisation and you just want to change one column of a two-column original and target language table), keeping the control key pressed down if you want to select several individual blocks of text.

If you want to change the language of the whole document, go to the Home tab and choose Select to the very right of the tab, then Select All:

3 select text

(or you might press the Select All button on your Quick Access Toolbar if you’ve added it there (marked with an arrow on the screenshot above) – see my article on Adding Buttons to the QAT if you need to know how to do that).

Once you’ve highlighted the text for which you want to set the language, click on the language display in the bottom status bar and choose your language:

4 select language

Note: Do not check spelling or grammar has a blue square next to it. Click in this square twice so that first a tick, then nothing, appears in the square.

Now click on OK. Your language will have changed to the language you selected.

This works exactly the same for Word 2007, 2010 and 2013.

How do I change the language using the menus in the ribbon?

If you don’t choose to display the language in the lower status bar, you can access it via the menus in the ribbon at the top of the screen instead. This works slightly differently in Word 2007, 2010 and 2013, so I’ll show you screenshots of all three.

In Word 2007, choose the Review tab and then Set Language in the Proofing section:

5 menus 2007

In Word 2010, choose the Review tab, then the Language button in the Language section, and click Set Proofing Language:

5 menus 2010

In Word 2013, again, choose the Review tab, Language section, Language button and Set Proofing Language:

5 menus 2013

For Word 2007, 2010 and 2013, once you’ve clicked on the relevant button, you will see the dialogue box for changing the language: select your language, remembering to click the blue square next to Do not check spelling and grammar once, twice, so there’s a tick then nothing:

7 select language

How do I make the language appear in the lower status bar of my document?

You may find yourself unable to display the language in the lower status bar, however much you right click and tell Word to display it. Please pop over to this article if you’re having this problem, where you will find screen prints that will walk you through the process.

How do I change the language in my comments balloons?

You may find that the language in your comments balloons remains the original language of the document. If you need to change the language in your comments, see this article.

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In this article, I’ve shown you how to change the language of your Word document. If you have found this useful, please leave a comment and click on the sharing buttons below. Thank you!

This is part of my series on how to avoid time-consuming “short cuts” and use Word in the right way to maximise your time and improve the look of your documents.

Related posts on this blog:

How to change the language of comments

Please note, these hints work with versions of Microsoft Word currently in use – Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013, all for PC. Mac compatible versions of Word should have similar options. Always save a copy of your document before manipulating it. I bear no responsibility for any pickles you might get yourself into!

Find all the short cuts here

 
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Posted by on March 26, 2014 in Errors, New skills, Short cuts, Word, Writing

 

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How to use Find and Replace in Word 2007, 2010 and 2013 2: Advanced Find

Hopefully, you’ve already read about simple Find and Replace in Word in my earlier post. In this article, I’m going to show you some of the Advanced Find features to do with word forms, wildcards and where you’re actually searching. Handily enough, these are the same in Word 2007, 2010 and 2013. For hints on replacing, see the previous article, and for finding formats, look out for my next post in this series (I will link it to this post once it’s live). I’m going to start by discussing the three different options for viewing the results of a simple Find search in Word 2010 and 2013, then move on to the Advanced Find options in all three versions.

Find options in Word 2010 and Word 2013 (Navigation)

When  you hit Ctrl-F to Find in Word 2010 and 2013, you are shown the Navigation side panel. This gives you three options for viewing the results of your simple search (i.e. you’ve searched for just a word or phrase, no whole word only or match case options applied).

The first tab on the left gives you the Outline view – if you have headings in your document, it will give you a run-down of those,and highlight in yellow where your search term appears. The search term “localisation” has been input into the search box at the top.

Word 2010 simple find options 1

The second tab gives you a Page view, showing only the pages that the search term appears on (you will see that it’s displaying pages 5, 6 and 14 here) with the search term highlighted.

Word 2010 simple find options 2

The third tab along gives you the Paragraph view, and this is the one that I find most useful, as it shows you the search term in its context. Click on the box and you’ll navigate to that place in the text. As you can see here, the word has also been highlighted in the actual text, and this is true for all of these views. This paragraph view is the most useful for seeing where you’ve used a word and deciding whether to change it.

Word 2010 simple find options 3

Now we’re going to look at some of the Advanced Find options. You can get to Advanced Find by clicking on the More button in Word 2007’s Search box, or by clicking the down arrow by the search input field and choosing Advanced Find in Word 2010 or 2013. Note, in Word 2010 and 2013, you can click on Options after clicking the down arrow, but that isn’t as specialised or useful as choosing Advanced Find.

If you’re confused about how to find the Advanced Find dialogue boxes, read this post for screen shots and explanations.

Advanced Find options: Find In

The Find In option allows you to specify where exactly you want to look for your search term. This is particularly useful if you are looking for something you or someone else has said in the Comments area of the text, or indeed the footnotes. Here I have a document with a main text, Comments and footnotes. I use the dropdown arrow next to Find In to access my options:

Advanced find options 1 find in

Whichever of these options you choose, it will only search in that area, saving time and narrowing down your search to exactly what you’re looking for.

Advanced Find options: Match case

Match case is extremely useful if you are only looking for a particular form of a word. For example, I might want to catch the instances where I’ve started a sentence with “And”. If I just search for “and” with no other options set, Word will usefully highlight all instances of the word. I’ve highlighted the one that I’m looking for in green here, but you can see how hard it would be to find amidst a sea of and … and … and. Note that I typed the word in with a capital letter, but unless I tell Word to take account of that, it will ignore it, and treat And, and, aNd, ANd, Andy, understanding, etc. all the same (to get rid of those last two, see the next section).

Advanced find options 2 no options

Tick the Match case box and it’s a different story. Now it’s only looking for And with a capital A. Note how the line under the search box includes a note of the option that I’ve selected:

Advanced find options 3 match case

Advanced Find: Find whole words only

As we saw briefly above, search for “and” without ticking any additional options, and Word will find the letters “and” however they may be capitalised and wherever they will be. Here, a search for and highlights the word understanding, too.

This can be really annoying, especially if you’re searching for a word that can appear as part of other words (like under, or stand!) and you want to do a Replace All on them or just find when you’ve used that particular word, not its compound. This is what happens when you don’t choose any options:

Advanced find options 4 no options

To stop this happening, tick the box next to Find whole words only. Now Word will only find the word “and” as a discrete word:

Advanced find options 5 whole words only

Note: you can use these two options together. For example, search for But using Match case and Find whole word only and you will limit what you find to sentences beginning with the word “But”, instead of all the examples of but in the middle of sentences and sentences beginning with “Butterflies” or “Butter” …

Advanced Find options: Wildcards

Lots of people know about the above two options, but Wildcards can seem a little alarming to the novice or even quite experienced Word user. Wildcards allow you to search very precisely for different forms or spellings of a word.

To use Wildcards in your search, tick the Wildcard option.

Advanced find options 7 wildcards

If you already know the special character to use in your Wildcard search, type your search term in the search box. If you need to check which special character to use, click on the Special dropdown on the button at the bottom of the screen. This will give you a huge range of choices for narrowing down your search:

Advanced find options 8 wildcards

In this case, I’m looking for words beginning with “localis”, so I choose the Beginning of Word option from the list:

Advanced find options 9 wildcards

Word inserts the special character in the search input box, and finds all of the words beginning with “localis”:

Advanced find options 10 wildcards

Now, you could just do a basic search for a bit of a word, but that’s only useful if the selection of letters you’re looking for all occur together. In the example above, we’re looking at the letters appearing at the beginning of a word, but what if you’re looking for a word and you can’t remember how you spelled it, or you fear you sometimes used an s and sometimes a z in “organisation”? Use the question mark option and search for “organi?ation” and you will find both spellings.

Note, there are many further special characters here apart from the ones used for Wildcards (which are ? – < and >) – I will be covering some of the most useful of those in future posts.

Advanced Find options: a note on Sounds like and Find all word forms

The two options at the bottom of the list can look quite tempting. But I will be honest and say that I don’t use them in my everyday work (if you do, please comment and share why you find them useful!).

Sounds like is the more useful of the two. It only works for the English language (presumably if you’ve bought a UK or US copy of Word) and it does what it says it does, finding words that sound like the word that you have entered.

Here I’ve searched for “Localize” and it has found the words that I would be looking for. They’re not spelled the same, but they do sound the same.

Advanced find options 11 sounds like

However, Find all word forms does NOT find “localisation” in the same piece of text, so I’d be careful about using this one (in fact, try not to), as it will miss out words from your search:

Advanced find options 12 all word forms

In this article, we’ve learned how to use some of the more advanced features of the Find function in Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013 in order to be able to look for the correct, specialised word in our document, including being able to choose where in the document it is and choosing fewer or more examples of words containing the letters we’re searching for.

If you’ve found this useful, please take a moment to share it, using the buttons under the article, or send me a comment, as I love hearing from my readers and knowing that I’ve helped! Thank you!

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This is part of my series on how to avoid time-consuming “short cuts” and use Word in the right way to maximise your time and improve the look of your documents.

Please note, these hints work with versions of Microsoft Word currently in use – Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013 all for PC. Mac compatible versions of Word should have similar options. Always save a copy of your document before manipulating it. I bear no responsibility for any pickles you might get yourself into!

Find all of the short cuts here

Related posts on this blog:

How to use Find and Replace 1 – basic find and replace

 
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Posted by on January 23, 2014 in Short cuts, Word, Writing

 

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How to use find and replace in Word 1: simple search and replace

This is the first of three articles about the useful Find and Replace functions in Word. It covers Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013 in detail, although once you’ve got past the first hurdle, they all work in exactly the same way. This article tells you why you might want to use Find and Replace, how to locate them, and basics of how to use them. Subsequent articles look in more detail at how to find specific words and phrases, and even symbols and formatting.

Why would I use Find and Replace?

The Find function in Word is very useful if you need to locate all of the places where you’ve used a particular word or phrase. I use it to check that I’ve kept things consistent. I might look for every instance of the word “Find” in an article on Find and Replace, for example, to check …

  • Have I always used it with a capital letter or sometimes with a lower-case initial letter?
  • Have I always typed Find and Replace, or sometimes Find & Replace?
  • Have I used find, finding, etc. too many times around the word Find, making the piece look clumsy?

I also use Find and Replace if I have decided that I want to change something throughout the text, for example:

  • I’ve used “low fat” and “low-fat” inconsistently and want to change all instances to low-fat
  • A client wants me to eliminate double spaces after full stops. I Find ”  ” and replace it with ” “
  • I’ve misheard an album title in a transcription and want to go back and find the incorrect version and replace it with the correct one

So, that’s why we use it – how do we use Find and Replace?

How do I access Find and Replace in Word 2007?

You can access the Find and Replace dialogue box in Word 2007 by going to the Home tab and clicking on the arrow to the right of Find at the right-hand end of the menu bar:

1a Word 2007

Word 2007 also uses the simple Ctrl-F keyboard shortcut to bring up the Find and Replace dialogue box (this also works in Word 2003).

1 Word 2007

Once you’ve brought up the dialogue box, type in the text you want to search for and press Enter or the Find Next button.

How do I access Find and Replace in Word 2010?

In Word 2010, you can access find and replace using the Home tab and the Find option at the right (note Advanced Find option):

2a Word 2010

If you just choose Find, you’ll get the sidebar shown below, if you choose Advanced Find, you’ll jump straight to the dialogue box.

Pressing Ctrl-F will bring up a sidebar with a simple search option. This seems very odd if you’re used to Word 2003 and Word 2007, as you are left wondering where the familiar dialogue box is, but it’s actually very useful, as you can see at a glance how many times your word is used and where in the text it can be found, and the word searched for (in this case localisation) is highlighted in the text:

2 Word 2010

If you want to access the more advanced Find and Replace dialogue box that you’re used to from Word 2007, you need to either choose Advanced Find from the Home tab Find area, or click on the arrow to the right of the magnifying glass in the side panel. If you do that, you’ll get a drop-down menu which includes Advanced Find.

3 Word 2010

Whichever option you choose, you will then be confronted with the familiar Find and Replace dialogue box:

3a Word 2010

Once you’ve brought up the dialogue box, type in the text you want to search for and press Enter or the Find Next button.

How do I access Find and Replace in Word 2013?

This works pretty well exactly the same as in Word 2010, just with fewer colours and less handy yellow highlighting (I’m sure you can add that back in and I’ll write about that when I find out  how to do it). So, you can either access Find and Replace using the Home tab, Find area, and dropping down the arrow at the right to choose Find or Advanced Find:

3a Word 2013

If you just choose Find, you’ll get the sidebar shown below, if you choose Advanced Find, you’ll jump straight to the dialogue box.

Or press Ctrl-F to access that useful sidebar that will surprise you if you’re accustomed to Word 2003/2007 … which will show you all instances of any word you search for in the whole document and highlight them (in yellow!):

4 Word 2013

Then, to reach the dialogue box, click the arrow to the right of the magnifying glass and choose Advanced Find:

5 Word 2013

And there’s your familiar dialogue box:

5b Word 2013

Once you’ve brought up the dialogue box, type in the text you want to search for and press Enter or the Find Next button.

Are there more options for Find?

You can access more options for Finding specific text by pressing the More button in the dialogue box:

5.5 more options 2010

This will give you lots more options for refining your search. Some are quite obvious, but I’m going to write about all of them in depth in another post.

Advanced find options

How do I replace text in Word 2007 / Word 2010 / Word 2013

(Note: all screenshots are from Word 2010, however this works exactly the same for all versions of Word back to Word 2003 and up to Word 2013 (at least)).

To Replace text, you need to go to the second tab along in the Find and Replace dialogue box, marked Replace. You will then be given an extra space to fill in the text you want to replace your found text with. In this case, I’m finding “localisation” and replacing it with “localization”:

6 replace

At this point you have a choice: hitting Find Next (to find the next instance of the word) and then Replace (to replace it with your new word) for each individual occurrence, or going wild and pressing Replace All (which will automatically replace every occurrence of the word you’ve found with the one you’re replacing it with),

7 replace what

I would always recommend using Find Next – Replace unless you absolutely know that you are not going to be replacing something you don’t mean to replace. Even replacing a double space with a single might play havoc if the person who wrote the document has used spaces to format tables (even if they shouldn’t do that, some still do). And consider this:

“John” means “toilet” in American English. So I might do a search and replace to Find John and replace it with toilet. But what if there’s a character or just someone mentioned called John Bloggs. Or, soon to be, Toilet Bloggs. It’s so easy for this to happen …

So, be careful with your Find and Replace and you’ll be fine!

———-

This article has covered the basics of Find and Replace. Next time, we have a look at the options you can use and using wildcards, and I will also look at finding and replacing formatting  …

If you’ve enjoyed this article or found it useful, please comment, or hit one of the share buttons you can see below this article. Thank you!

This is part of my series on how to avoid time-consuming “short cuts” and use Word in the right way to maximise your time and improve the look of your documents.

Please note, these hints work with versions of Microsoft Word currently in use – Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013 all for PC. Mac compatible versions of Word should have similar options. Always save a copy of your document before manipulating it. I bear no responsibility for any pickles you might get yourself into!

Find all the short cuts here

Related posts on this blog:

Advanced Find and Wildcards

 
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Posted by on December 11, 2013 in Errors, New skills, Short cuts, Word, Writing

 

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Using the Control Key keyboard shortcuts

hands typingBack in June, I wrote about the wonders of Control-F and how you can use this keyboard shortcut to find text in almost everything you would do on a computer (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, web pages, WordPress back-end, etc., etc., etc). This post tells you about the other Control- or Ctrl+ keyboard shortcuts that you can use to …

  • save your mouse hand
  • do things quickly
  • impress your friends (maybe – depends what kind of friends you have …)

What keyboard shortcuts does the Control Key give you?

I’m going to categorise these into different areas for you. For each shortcut, you will typically need to highlight the text that you want to change if you’re doing something like changing its style or copying or cutting it, and pop the cursor in the right place if you want to paste. I’ll tell you what you need to do by each one. For each one, you need to press the Control key, usually marked Ctrl (and you might have more than on on your keyboard) then keep it pressed down while you press the second key on the keyboard).

Keyboard shortcuts for copying and pasting:

Ctrl-C – COPY Highlight the text you want to copy (leaving it where it is but making a copy you can paste elsewhere) and hit Control + c

Ctrl-X – CUT Highlight the text you want to cut out of your text (and maybe paste elsewhere) and hit Control + x

Ctrl-V – PASTE – pop the cursor where you want the text you’ve cut or copied to appear and hit Control + v

Ctrl-A – HIGHLIGHT ALL – if you want to highlight all of your text in Word, Excel, etc., you can use Control + a to do so

Bonus shortcut: if you want to switch between ALL CAPITALS, Title Capitals and Sentence capitals on a section of text, Shft-F3 is your friend. More detail here.

Keyboard shortcuts for bold, italics and underline

In each case, highlight the text you want to change, and press these keys:

Ctrl-B – to turn non-bold text into bold OR take the emboldening off a section of text, press Control + b

Ctrl-I – to turn non-italic text into italics OR take the italicisation off a section of text, press Control + i

Ctrl-U – to underline text OR take underlining away from a section of text, press Control + u

Keyboard shortcuts for Find, Goto and Replace

Ctrl-F – almost everywhere, pressing Control + f will open up a window to allow you to find a string of text (see this article for more detail)

Ctrl-H – in any document where you can replace text (i.e. Word, Excel, Powerpoint, etc.), pressing Control + h will open up the find and replace window which allows you to change a particular string of text into another particular string of text (I will be writing about this in more detail soon)

Ctrl-G – in documents with pages, pressing Control + g will allow you to navigate to a particular page

Keyboard shortcuts for undoing and redoing

Ctrl-Z – UNDO – if you want to undo what you’ve just done, hitting Control-Z has the same effect as hitting that little backwards arrow in your toolbar. It also works if you typed in a URL and the page is taking ages to load – Control-Z will cancel the operation

Ctrl-Y – REDO – lots of people know about Ctrl-Z, but did you know that you can redo an operation that you’ve undone by hitting Control-Y?

Keyboard shortcuts for open / new / print / save

Ctrl-N – if you want to open a new document in Word, Excel, etc., or a new browser window, pressing Control + n will do that for you

Ctrl-O – To open a document, wherever you are on your computer, pressing Control + o will open Windows Explorer so you can find and open your document

Ctrl-S – To open up Windows Explorer and save your document, pressing Control + s will save you clicking with your mouse

Ctrl-P – Want to print? Open up a printer dialogue box using Control + p

———————

Go on – admit it: did you really know ALL of these shortcuts? They’ll save you a few mouse clicks and I find some to be a lot quicker and more useful than the other methods you can use to get the same results. Which are your favourite keyboard shortcuts?

Related posts on this blog:

How to find text almost anywhere

Changing from lower case to upper case

Find all of the short cuts here

 
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Posted by on November 20, 2013 in Errors, New skills, Short cuts, Word, Writing

 

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How do I change my initials in Word 2007, 2010 and 2013?

Your name and initials appear in the File Properties of your Word document, and also in any comments that you make on a document, plus in the text that appears when someone hovers over text that you’ve added or deleted. So it’s important that it’s right – usually Word pulls this over from your registration details, but you may wish to change it, for example if you want to add a general company or team name and initials rather than your own. Here’s how!

You will find the option to change your initials and name in Word Options. Word Options are accessed slightly differently in Word 2007, 2010 and 2013, so I will break this down by the version of Word that you’re using:

How do I change my initials in Word 2007?

Access Word Options by clicking the Office button at top left, then Word Options at the bottom:

1 word options 2007

Your Word Options box will open on the Popular tab and you can now change your name and initials:

1 2007

How do I change my initials in Office 2010?

Click on the File tab and select Options:

2 word options 2010

Click on Options, and you can change your name and initials:

2 2010

How do I change my initials in Word 2013?

First click on the File tab:

3a word options 2013

Select Options at the bottom of the list (use the arrow in a circle at the top left to get back to your document):

3b word options 2013

Click on Options and change your initials and name:

3 2013

This is part of my series on how to avoid time-consuming “short cuts” and use Word in the right way to maximise your time and improve the look of your documents. Find all the short cuts here

Do let me know if this has helped you – and do share with the buttons at the bottom of this article.

 
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Posted by on November 13, 2013 in Copyediting, New skills, Students, Word, Writing

 

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How do I access Word Options in Word 2007, 2010 and 2013?

Word Options is the place where you customise the look of your Word document, how it corrects your words as you type away, the spell checker, your initials on any comments and the document properties, etc. It’s a great place to explore and enables you to customise Word and get it exactly how you want it.

However, it does work slightly differently in the three most commonly used versions of Word for PC: Word 2007, Word 2010 and Word 2013, so here’s a quick guide to how to access Word Options in these different versions of Word.

How to access the Word Options in Word 2007:

Click on the Office button in the top left of the screen, then click on Word Options at the bottom of the box:

1 word options 2007

Your Word Options box will now display:

1b word options 2007

How to access the Word Options in Office 2010:

In Word 2010, click on the File tab and then select Options, one up from the bottom of the list on the left hand side:

2 word options 2010

Once you’ve clicked on Options, your Word Options box will appear:

4 trust center

How to access Word Options in Word 2013:

In Word 2013, click on the File tab:

3a word options 2013

This has the effect of making your screen disappear, but you will get a list of things to do, out of which you select Options at the very bottom of the list (you can click that left-pointing arrow in a circle at the top left to get back to your document):

3b word options 2013

Clicking on Options will bring up the Options box:

3c word options 2013

This is part of my series on how to avoid time-consuming “short cuts” and use Word in the right way to maximise your time and improve the look of your documents. Find all the short cuts here

Do let me know if this has helped you – and do share with the buttons at the bottom of this article.

 
 

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