Use Line Numbers When Reviewing Word Documents

Dennis Faas's picture

Using line numbers in Word can help your readers find a particular section or paragraph.

When secretaries sometimes have to do a "read against," which is when one reads a document and the other follows along with the same document to make sure that the two documents are the same, or when you have a business meeting and you're all grouped around the table following the reader while looking at a document, you want to be sure that you're all at the same place in the document.

To make the task easier, follow the steps below:

  1. Go to File | Page Setup and click the Layout tab.
  2. Under Preview, click in the Apply To box and select Whole Document.
  3. Click the Line Numbers button.
  4. Click the Add Line Numbering check box.
  5. Click Restart Each Page and click OK.

Word will automatically number each line of text on a page (except those in tables, footnotes, endnotes, text boxes, frames, and headers and footers), starting with the default number one on each page. Now when referring to specific text, readers do not have to skim entire paragraphs to find an exact passage; they simply go to the line number.

There will be times when you won't want certain paragraphs numbered. To prevent Word from numbering those lines, follow these steps before turning on Line Numbering in Page Setup.

  • Select the paragraphs that you do not want numbered.
  • Go to Format | Paragraph and click on the Line And Page Breaks tab.
  • Click the Suppress Line Numbers check box and click OK.

I am sure you will find this tip useful at some point!

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