Beginner’s Guide to Microsoft Word
This is the beginner’s guide to using Microsoft Word and specifically using it to create documents like reports, essays, handouts, flyers, things like that. You can just click Search Windows and do a search for Microsoft Word to see if it’s on your computer. And it gives me right away a bunch of templates that I can choose from to help me get started creating documents using Microsoft Word. And you can see that there are all sorts of great documents. They have trifold brochures they have event menus. They have blog posts, all sorts of different templates that you can use. Also across the top, notice that you can filter them by category, so I could just show Business templates.
And notice that there is an Education category. You can also search for online templates here. So templates can be a great time-saver. You can just select one of these templates to open it up and then edit it and use it for your own purposes. But, in this tutorial. We’re going to focus just on creating starting from scratch.
Most people don’t really use Word to its full capabilities but in this tutorial, I’m really going to focus on the basics, on those essentials that you need to know to start using Microsoft Word effectively. And one of the first things I’m going to do is just close this panel here at the left that says Navigation. It’s a nice panel, but I’m going to get rid of that and close that out. Next, I want to give you a quick tour of what you’re seeing here in the layout. If you’ve watched my other tutorials, you already know about this Microsoft office layout, but for those who maybe haven’t watched those other tutorials just a quick intro to each of these tabs. When you click on it will give you a different ribbon and that’s what they call this is the ribbon. So if I want to change something about the layout, I click on layout and then I look at the layout ribbon and see what I can do. Now each ribbon is divided up into groups, so this is the Page Setup group. This is the Paragraph group and the Arrange group. I get the insert ribbon with lots and lots of different groups. Now, one thing about groups that you need to be aware of is some groups will have a little launch button in the corner. So here’s an example of a launch button. The paragraph group has a launch button but the arranging group doesn’t at least for me it doesn’t. The page setup group has a launch button. So what are these lunch buttons and why do you need to know about them? Well basically, whenever you see a launch button, what that means is that there are more tools but that they couldn’t fit them in the space provided in the group.
So if I don’t see one of the font options that I would like to have, I look through these to see if it’s there and if it’s not. Another example over here in the Styles group. So watch out for that launch button. Ok, now down here I have the page of my document. This is my Word document and it’s completely blank. At this time a couple of things that I want you to know about before you get started making a document: First of all, I don’t know about you, but I like to be able to see the document – at least its width – and so I’m gonna go down here in the lower right corner and change the zoom level. So it was at 200% and that was a little bit too big for me. Maybe 150 maybe 125. So I think I’ll just go with this 100%.
The layout options
bringing this up is that if you’re having trouble finding an option like I am right now, you don’t need to really hunt and search for it very much if it’s not quickly showing up. All you need to do is go here to the top where it says” Tell me what you want to do” and do a search. So I’ll do a search for “Rulers” and, look, right there at the top there’s an option that says “Show Ruler” and I can click on it and immediately the rulers pop up. Okay, so I’m happy now with the look of Microsoft Word. Okay, now I’m ready to start creating a wonderful document, and let’s say this document is going to be a handout or a worksheet for my students. I can just go in and start creating. So I’ll just provide a space there for the name of the student, the class period, and I’m just typing and hitting Return or Enter on the keyboard. And I would like this to be the title of my document. Now, this is pretty typical, but what I would do here is highlight the text, and immediately I get a pop-up here with some options that I have. But I can also go here to the Home tab home ribbon. That’s where you’ll find the most commonly needed options in Microsoft Word. And so, look, there is Center and that’s what I was hoping for. I can also underline if I want to. I can make it bold and there are all sorts of options that you have there. I could make the text bigger but more often than not, instead of making all of these fine-tuned adjustments, what I often do is use these styles. And so to show that I’m going to click the Undo button several times to go back to just the text.
So with just the text selected, I’m going to go here where it says Styles and I’ll go to Heading number 1 and you can see what it does. It changes the color, it makes it bigger, changes the font a little bit. There’s also Heading number 2, and several other options. The title would be a good one as well. And I’m gonna go with Title. Now, regardless of which one you pick, if you want you can still adjust it, as I would still like that to be centered. Is till like it to be underlined, and I think that looks really nice. So, now I hit Enter or Return and I can proceed to create this worksheet.
I’m just typing hitting Enter, moving down. I can only click so far. It’s not letting me go past the current line that I’ve typed. I can go to the right side of it, but that’s as far as it’ll let me go. I can go back up though, by clicking and make changes, make adjustments. Okay and I’m really ruining this document, aren’t I? So I’ll just undo it a few times, but the point is that if you want to put in some blank space and then type something below, you’re gonna have
And you heard me say the keyword there, didn’t you? It’s “Insert”. So I click on “Insert” and look at the options that I have: four things to insert into this document, all sorts of things, including Wikipedia articles, online videos, all sorts of neat things. But in this case, I’m going to go to pictures, and that automatically accessed my computer and now I can browse my computer to find pictures that I can then pull in and use in my document. So I’ll pull in this skeleton. Now, whenever you put a photo or an image into Microsoft Word, it brings up some difficulties. For example, that is not at all where I wanted that photo to be. The other problem is the photo came in way too big. So let’s fix some of these issues. The first thing I’m going to do is click on the picture. Now, something subtle just happened when I clicked on that photo. Look what happened. I got an additional tab and ribbon that appeared at the top of Microsoft Word and this is going to be very important. In this case the format options. The first thing I want to do though is just resized this image. So with it selected, I can just go to the corner – any corner – click and drag to shrink that photo down to size a little bit. And that’s a lot better. Now, I still I’m struggling. Now in this latest version of Microsoft Word, when you click on a photo, you’ll get this little button that pops up. You can then click on it to change the layout options, but just like in older versions of Microsoft Word, you also have the option to right-click and go to Wrap Text and that will give you the same options. So here in Wrap Text, I’m going to go with In Front of Text or Behind Text.