Counting Words

If you are doing study assignments or are writing for publication then you often have a specified number of words that your essay or article needs to contain. Alternatively you might just be curious and wonder how many words that letter to grandma you just wrote actually contains.

Microsoft Word provides a simple method of counting the number of words that are contained in a complete document allowing you to accurately determine whether you have written sufficient for your study essay, need to trim your article because it is too big for publication, or just to satisfy your curiosity. What is nore, you don't just get the word count, you also get a count of the total number of characters, the number of lines, and the number of pages. Determining whether the length of your document is appropriate to satisfy your teacher or editor has never been easier.

All that you need to do to obtain these counts is to select Word Count from the Tools menu.

Note that any foot notes and end notes referenced by your document are not included in the counts.

This same option can be used to get statistics for a part of a document (for example if you need to compare the number of words on one page with the number on another page). To do this, all you need to do is to select the section of text that you want the counts for first and then choose exactly the same menu option.

Note that where only part of a line is selected then all of that line will be included in the counts and not just that part of the line that is selected.


This article written by Stephen Chapman, Felgall Pty Ltd.

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