Home > Articles

Editing Documents

  • Print
  • + Share This
This chapter is from the book

In This Chapter

  • Selecting text to perform numerous operations.

  • Using the Undo feature as the ultimate "oops" fixer.

  • Adjusting the zoom setting so that you can read tiny print or check a detailed graphic.

  • Opening multiple documents at once so that you can easily create a new document from pieces of existing documents.

  • Using Word's collection of view modes to review, edit, and format documents.

  • Previewing a document in Print Preview before you send it to the printer.

  • Faxing and emailing documents.

When you're learning a new program, there is a certain amount of information that you have to learn before you can move on to the more advanced features. One of the most critical skills you can develop is selecting with the mouse or the keyboard. You'll soon see that many actions that you take in a document involve selecting text.

Another important concept is learning how to send out your documents. Back in the "old days" you had to print a document and either mail it or hand carry it to the recipient. In Word 2003, you can fax or email documents just as easily as you would print them. Add the Print Preview feature, which helps you proof your documents onscreen, and you are well on your way to saving trees.

Selecting Text

The Select feature is a powerful tool. Whenever you want to work with a specific section of text, you can select just that portion and work on it separately from the rest of the document. Selecting text gives you maximum flexibility because you can isolate the text or other items that you want to work with. Whatever action you take on the selection won't affect the rest of the document. When you edit documents, you'll do a lot of selecting, so take a few minutes to learn some shortcuts.

Selecting Text with the Keyboard

You can use either the mouse or the keyboard to select text. Each method has its own advantages, so it's a good idea to learn both techniques. Let's look at selecting text using the keyboard first.

To select a portion of text, follow these steps:

  1. Position the insertion point at the beginning of the area you want to select.

  2. Hold down the Shift key.

  3. Use the arrow keys, or any of the navigation shortcuts that you prefer, to move to the end of the selection. For example, to select text a word at a time, hold down the Shift key while pressing Ctrl+right arrow. To select everything from the cursor to the end of the line, hold down the Shift key and press End.

Word shows the selection with a background color (see Figure 3.1). You can now work with this area of the document as a single unit.

Selecting Text with the Mouse

Selecting text with the mouse is also easy, although you might need a bit of practice before you become really good at it. Table 3.1 shows several methods of using the mouse to select text.

Table 3.1 Selecting Text with the Mouse

Mouse Action

What It Selects

Drag across text

One whole word at a time


Entire word


Entire sentence


Entire paragraph

Single-click in left margin

Entire line

Double-click in left margin

Entire paragraph

Figure 3.1Figure 3.1 Selected text is shown with a different background color to differentiate it from the rest of the text.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account