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Webucator's Free Advanced Microsoft Word 2013 Tutorial

Lesson: Comparing and Combining Documents

Welcome to our free Advanced Microsoft Word 2013 tutorial. This tutorial is based on Webucator's Advanced Microsoft Word 2013 Training course.

In this lesson, you will learn how to compare and combine multiple Microsoft Word documents.

Lesson Goals

  • Compare documents to find out what has changed between different versions of a document.
  • Combine documents to gather revisions made by various individuals into a single document.

Comparing Documents

It is often helpful to compare one version of a document to another to see what has changed. For example:

  1. An employee in the marketing department might create a document highlighting the benefits of a product and send it to a manager for review. The manager then makes a lot of changes, without tracking them, and returns it to the employee. To quickly find out what the manager changed, the employee can compare the original document with the version received back from the manager.
  2. An individual sends a legal agreement to another person, who makes changes and returns it. To quickly find out what the person changed, the first individual can compare the original agreement with the version received back from the second person.

To compare two documents:

  1. From within any Microsoft Word document (it does not have to be one of the ones you are comparing, but it can be), click on the REVIEW tab and then click the Compare command: Compare Command
  2. Select Compare:Select Compare
  3. In the Compare Documents dialog box:
    1. Choose the original and revised documents you wish to compare.
    2. In the Label unmarked changes with boxes, Word will suggest who to attribute changes to. You can edit this if you want.
    3. Under Comparison settings, deselect anything you do not wish to check. By default, Word checks for all types of changes.
      1. If necessary, click the More>> button to display the Comparison settings:Compare Documents Dialog Box
    4. In the Show changes section, you can choose to show changes in the original document, the revised document or in a new document. The default selection is a new document:Compare Documents Dialog Box
  4. Click OK to compare the documents. Differences will show up as tracked changes. The image below shows what they might look like:Tracked Changes

Comparing Documents

Duration: 5 to 10 minutes.

In this exercise, you will compare an original document with a revised version of the same document.

  1. Open a blank Microsoft Word document or go to any Microsoft Word document you already have open.
  2. Compare General Terms and Conditions.docx with General Terms and Conditions3.docx, both of which are located in the Word2013.3/Exercises folder.
  3. Close the document without saving.

Solution:

  1. Open a blank Microsoft Word document or go to any Word document you already have open.
  2. Click on the REVIEW tab and then click the Compare command: Compare Command
  3. Select Compare:Select Compare
  4. In the Original document selection box, click on the drop-down arrow to view recently used files and select General Terms and Conditions.docx General Terms and Conditions
  5. To the right of the Revised document selection box, click on the folder and navigate to the Word2013.3/Exercises folder and open General Terms and Conditions3.docx Folder Icon
  6. Click OK:Compare Documents Dialog Box
  7. The image below shows what the documents should look like after being compared:Documents After Being Compared
  8. Close the document without saving.

Combining Documents

It is often helpful to combine documents to view changes from multiple sources in one document. For example:

  1. An employee in the marketing department might create a document highlighting the benefits of a product and send it to two different people at their company to review, both of whom make changes and return updated documents to the employee. To avoid going through each document individually, the employee can combine the documents.

To combine two documents:

  1. From within any Microsoft Word document (it does not have to be one of the ones you are comparing, but it can be), click on the REVIEW tab and then click the Compare command: Compare Command
  2. Select Combine:Select Combine
  3. In the Combine Documents dialog box:
    1. Choose the original and revised documents you wish to combine.
    2. In the Label unmarked changes with boxes, Word will suggest who to attribute changes to. You can edit this if you want.
    3. Under Comparison settings, deselect anything you do not wish to check. By default, Word checks for all types of changes.
    4. In the Show changes section, you can choose to show changes in the original document, the revised document or in a new document. The default selection is a new document:Combine Documents Dialog Box
  4. Click OK to compare the documents. Differences will show up as tracked changes.
  5. If both documents contain formatting changes, Word will ask you to choose which formatting changes to keep. Select one of the documents and then press Continue with Merge:Combine Message Box
  6. The image below shows what they might look like:Combined Document

Combining Documents

Duration: 5 to 10 minutes.

In this exercise, you will combine changes from two versions of a document.

  1. Open a blank Microsoft Word document or go to any Word document you already have open.
  2. Combine General Terms and Conditions2.docx with General Terms and Conditions - Boz Scaggs.docx, both of which are located in the Word2013.3/Exercises folder.
    1. Keep the formatting changes suggested by Boz Scaggs.
  3. Close the document without saving.

Solution:

  1. Open a blank Microsoft Word document or go to any Word document you already have open.
  2. Click on the REVIEW tab and then click the Compare command: Compare Command
  3. Select Combine:Select Combine
  4. To the right of the Original document selection box, click on the folder and navigate to the Word2013.3/Exercises folder and open General Terms and Conditions2.docx:Original Document Selection Box
  5. To the right of the Revised document selection box, click on the folder and navigate to the Word2013.3/Exercises folder and open General Terms and Conditions - Boz Scaggs.docx:Revised Document Selection Box
  6. Click OK:Combine Documents Dialog Box
  7. In the dialog box that opens, select "The other document (General Terms and Conditions - Boz Scaggs.docx)" and click Continue with Merge:Combined Document Message
  8. The image below shows what the documents should look like after being combined:Combined Document
  9. Close the document without saving.