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Divide Text into Columns


How can I separate Word documents into columns?


This question was answered on December 30, 2005. Much of the information contained herein may have changed since posting.

There are many instances where it is necessary or useful to display text in your Microsoft Word document in columns, like a newspaper Especially with lists of small items, columns let you display more information in a smaller amount of space Here's how to format your text into columns.

1 First, enter the text you want displayed in columns.

2 Highlight the text with your mouse.

3 Select go to Format and click Columns.

4 Select or enter the number of columns you wish to use.

5 Underneath Width and spacing you can select how wide each column should be, plus the spacing between each column Or, let Microsoft Word do this for you Note that by unchecking Equal column width, you can customize each column's individual spacing and width rather than apply the same constraints to each column.

6 Would you like lines separating your columns? If so, check Line between.

7 Make sure that next to Apply to that Selected Text is displayed If not, you might accidentally make the whole document appear in columns.

8 When you are done making your selections, click OK to close the dialog box Your text will then be split into columns of equal size (or as close to equal size as possible).

If you don't like how the columns look, click Undo and start over.

One helpful tip: At least in some older versions of Microsoft Word, complex documents increase the chance that Microsoft Word will crash For safety's sake, before separating text into columns, save your document This way, if Microsoft Word crashes, you shouldn't lose all of your keyed information Cheers!

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Posted by Chad of Data Doctors on December 30, 2005