Before we identify the different parts of a table, let’s go ahead and insert one into our document. To do this, position the cursor at the point in the document where you want to put the table. Don’t worry if it’s not exactly right-you can always move or manipulate it later.
The tool you’re going to use to insert a table is almost directly under the Insert tab. It looks like this:
Here’s an example of a 3 X 3 table using Insert Table:
We know that, without having to count each box, because Word tells us with the text right above the boxes. See where it says “3×3 Table”? Cool, huh? And convenient.
We now have a basic table. So let’s identify the parts.
Each box is called a “Cell.” There are 9 cells in the example above.
The “Rows” go from top to bottom. In the example below, the rows are numbered from one to three and the 1 st row is highlighted.
Columns go from left to right. In this example, the columns are numbered and the middle column (2.) is highlighted. In a program such as Excel, the rows are usually expressed in numbers while the columns are expressed in letters. For instance, in our example Row 1, Column 2 might be expressed as 1b.
So now that we’ve identified the parts of a table, let’s take a look at the other ways in which we can add them.
Using the Insert Table Dialogue
A dialogue launches in the center of your screen. It looks like this.
By default, the column width will adjust automatically to fit the text and objects you insert into a cell. If you don’t want this to happen, you can select “Fixed column width” and set a fixed value.
Drawing a Table
If you know your table is not going to be uniform (regularly sized columns and rows), you can “draw” a table. This is particularly helpful when using tables to create complex page layouts.
Selecting parts of tables
You can select and change the attributes of any row, column, or individual cell.
You can select an entire table using either of those methods.
Adding Text to a Table
Converting Text into a Table
You can convert text into a table. This is especially handy if you’ve already written information that you think would be more effectively conveyed in a table.
To do this, you’ll have to carve up the text into columns and rows using commas and new paragraphs. That’s how you tell Word to separate the text into individual cells. Simply place a comma between the text you want to put into a column and place a paragraph where you want to begin a new row. An example of the text might look like this:
Look at the example below to see the final result.
Formatting Tables with the Table Tools
Whenever you create or select a table, the Table Tools will open automatically over the Design and Layout tabs in the tool bar. It allows you to easily apply table styles, borders, and shading attributes and more. Below is an example of the Design layout tools available for tables.
A zoom of the Design layout tools for tables, left and right is below:
The Layout tab, when associated with the Table Tools, allows you to easily insert rows and columns, and format text and objects within cells. The Table Tools ribbon is below and the zoom of their left and right sections is below it.
Adjusting the Width of Individual Columns
There are several ways to adjust the width of individual columns:
o Select the column, then go to the Table Tool/Layout tab and type a figure into the Width box as in the following example.
Adjusting Width of All Columns
To fix the width of all of the columns at once, select the entire table and use the Width box in the Table Tool/Layout tab to adjust the columns to the desired size.
You can also use the Distribute Columns button to make all of the columns the same size.
Adjust rows in the same way, except use the Height field.
Adding Rows and Columns
There are two ways to add a new row or column to a table.
o Insert Columns to the Left
o Insert Columns to the Right
o Choose an option from the Rows & Columns section of the ribbon.
Deleting Cells, Rows or Columns
You will then have the option of deleting a cell, a row, a column, or the entire table.
Merging Cells and Splitting Cells
Borders and Shading
The way information in a table is presented determines how easily it can be understood. Use the borders and shading features to control the look of a table.
The borders and shading tools can be found in the Table Styles group on the Design tab under Table Tools.
Microsoft Word 2010 provides some customizable templates. Roll your mouse over one of them, and you will see a preview in your selected table.
Use the Borders button to add or remove borders or adjust the stroke width. Use the Shading feature to control the color of a cell, row or column.
A drop cap is a simple embellishment that, if used correctly, can make your documents look more interesting and professional. Basically, it’s a letter at the beginning of a section or paragraph that is larger than the text that follows it, but instead of extending upward (which is what it would do if you just tried to increase the font size for a single letter) it drops a few lines down:
You can have the letter drop as many lines as you’d like, and even choose how much space to put between it and the text that follows.
You’re probably familiar with watermarks. They can sometimes be seen stamped into expensive bond paper, and they are visible when you hold twenty-dollar-bills up to the light. You’re probably thinking, though, “Cool, Word 2010 can do that?” The answer is, “Sort of.”
A real watermark is stamped into a page with expensive equipment. All Word 2010 does, really, is allows you to place a light, printable image behind all the text and objects in a document. You can use it to add an effect to the document, mark it as a sample or draft, or even authenticate it.
Unlike most objects that can be inserted into a document, the watermark button isn’t located on the Insert tab. Instead, to place one in your document, go to the Page Layout tab and look at the Page Background section of the ribbon. It is placed here because really, that’s what a watermark is-a background. It cannot be manipulated or moved around like other objects.
Borders and Shading
Borders can be applied to an entire page, an entire document, or just certain sections of the document. They can also be applied to paragraphs.