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Navigate Long Documents in Word 2007 and 2010 Using Bookmarks

00_going_to_a_bookmark

If you work with long documents in Word and prefer not to use Master Documents or separate files, you can use bookmarks to jump to specific places in your document.

Inserting bookmarks in Word is like putting a bookmark in a book to mark your place. Bookmarks in Word are codes that are inserted into your document, but they are not visible (unless you make them visible) and do not print.

To insert a bookmark at a specific point in your document, insert the cursor where you want the bookmark and click the Insert tab on the ribbon.

NOTE: You can also highlight text where you want to place a bookmark.

01_clicking_insert_tab

Click Bookmark in the Links group on the Insert tab.

02_clicking_bookmark

On the Bookmark dialog box, enter a name for the bookmark in the edit box below Bookmark name and click Add.

NOTE: Use a descriptive name for each bookmark to help you know what text is located at each bookmark. We just used “Bookmark1″ as an example, although it is not the best name for a bookmark.

03_adding_bookmark

Bookmarks are not visible by default. To be able to view the bookmarks in your document, click the File tab and click Options.

NOTE: If you are using Word 2007, click the Office button and click Word Options at the bottom of the Office menu.

04_opening_options

On the Word Options dialog box, click Advanced in the list on the left. On the Advanced screen on the right, scroll down to the Show document content section and select the Show bookmarks check box so there is a check mark in the box. Click OK to save your changes and close the dialog box.

05_turning_on_show_bookmarks

If you placed the cursor at a specific point when inserting a bookmark, the bookmark displays as an I-beam, as pictured below.

06_bookmark_showing_in_document

If you selected text when inserting a bookmark, the selected text is surrounded by brackets indicating the location of the bookmark.

NOTE: Bookmark brackets are useful when you need to modify text or other content enclosed by a bookmark without deleting the bookmark itself.

07_bookmark_in_brackets

To jump to a bookmark, you can use the same Bookmark dialog box you used to insert the bookmark. Access the Bookmark dialog box from the Insert tab as discussed earlier in this article. Select the desired bookmark from the list and click Go To. The Cancel button becomes a Close button you can use to close the Bookmark dialog box.

08_go_to_bookmark_using_bookmark_dialog

You can also jump to bookmarks using the Find and Replace dialog box. To use this method, click the Home tab on the ribbon and click the drop-down arrow on the Find button in the Editing group.

09_selecting_find_go_to

The Find and Replace dialog box displays with the Go To tab active. Select Bookmark in the Go to what list and select a bookmark from the Enter bookmark name drop-down list. Click Go To. The Find and Replace dialog box remains open after jumping to a location. Click Close to close the dialog box.

10_using_find_and_replace_dialog

You can add bookmarks the the different sections in your document to make it quicker and easier to get to those sections. Because bookmark symbols are not printed, you can set up bookmarks for headings, images, paragraphs, and even items such as imported objects and audio files.

Lori Kaufman is a freelance technical writer who likes to write geeky how-to articles to help make people's lives easier through the use of technology. She loves watching and reading mysteries and is an avid Doctor Who fan.

  • Published 10/4/11

Comments (4)

  1. Pavel

    I usually use the navigation pane to go to different headings quickly. I’ve made an easy shortcut for it. This is also useful though.

  2. biboymigs

    Thanks for this detailed how-to. I will try it out and l am sure that it will make my navigation a lot easier and less confusing.

  3. Jerry

    Wordperfect has a quickmark feature where Shift-Ctrl-Q marks a place in the document and Ctrl-Q returns you to the place in the document where you hit Shift-Ctrl-Q. No name is required for this quick bookmark feature. This is a very important feature for writing, where you want to go check something else in the document and then return to where you were writing when you decided to go check something. I can’t find a similar feature in MS Word 2010, which is otherwise so good that I’m leaving Wordperfect. Does anyone know how to establish a quickmark feature in MS Word?

  4. kandries

    I find the title somewhat misleading, since bookmarks can be used in Word 2003 as well.

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