Did you know Word can check for gender-specific language? Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016

31 Aug

Following on from my discussion of “singular they” removing gender-specific / binary gender pronouns from your text, did you know that you can ask Word to keep an eye out for gender-specific terms in your document? Here’s how to do it.

We set up different things for the Grammar checker to check in the Options menu:

1 options

In Options, choose Proofing:

2 proofing

Scroll down to the section headed When correcting spelling and grammar in Word and click on the Settings button:

3 style settings

Make sure the writing style is set to Grammar Only:

4 style settings

Tick Gender-specific words (and notice there are all sorts of other grammar and style aspects you can ask Word to highlight for you):

5 gender-specific words

In order for Word to actually use this feature, make sure that Check grammar with spelling is ticked:

5.5 checkingClick OK until you are back at the original screen.

Back in your Word document, if you use a gender-specific term such as “chairman” or “actress”, when you run a spell (and grammar) check, Word will highlight those terms and offer alternatives:

6 checking

This article has described how to ask Word 2007, 2010, 2013 or 2016 to highlight gender-specific terms in your documents.

If you have found this article useful, please share using one of the buttons below. I always welcome comments, too!

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Posted by on August 31, 2016 in Word


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10 responses to “Did you know Word can check for gender-specific language? Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016

  1. Don Massenzio

    September 1, 2016 at 12:40 pm

    Reblogged this on Don Massenzio's Blog.


  2. The Story Reading Ape

    September 1, 2016 at 6:29 pm

    Reblogged this on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog.


  3. Tracy Campbell

    September 1, 2016 at 8:51 pm

    I love learning new things. Very helpful. I’ll share as well. And I found this post via Mr Ape. 👍


    • Liz Dexter

      September 2, 2016 at 11:44 am

      Glad I could help, and nice to know how you came to me. Watch this space / follow the blog for more Word tips or have an explore!


  4. patriciaruthsusan

    September 2, 2016 at 11:27 am

    Good information. Thanks for sharing. 🙂 — Suzanne


    • Liz Dexter

      September 2, 2016 at 11:43 am

      Thank you, I’m not sure many people know about this!


  5. Mohd Zaffurallah

    February 26, 2019 at 5:30 pm

    IS there a tool for same gender checking in LibreOffice….thank you for your supprt


    • Liz Dexter

      February 27, 2019 at 6:28 am

      Thank you for your question – I’m afraid I don’t know the answer and a quick Google didn’t help much. I’ll leave this open in case someone else can reply (that often happens). Let me know if you find the answer somewhere else.



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