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Microsoft Word is a powerful program which is used to create many different types of documents, including articles, letters, books, contracts, marketing documents and much more. Microsoft Word has hundreds of commands for working with different documents. To make it easier for users to find the specific commands they are looking for, commands are organized onto seven main tabs:

  1. Home. The Home tab includes commands for formatting documents.
  2. Insert. Use the Insert tab to insert pages, tables, pictures, links, headers & footers, custom text and symbols, and more.
  3. Page Layout. Use the Page Layout Tab to change your margins, change the page background, add columns, change the page orientation, and more.
  4. References. Use the References tab to add a table of contents, add footnotes, add a bibliography, and more.
  5. Mailings. Use the Mailings tab to create labels, start a mail merge, and more.
  6. Review. Use the Review tab to check spelling and grammar, track and accept or reject changes, compare documents, and more.
  7. View. Use the View tab to change your document view, show the Ruler or navigation pane, zoom in or out, and more.

Note that the File menu is not the same as a tab. The File menu takes you to the Backstage view, where you manage, rather than make changes to, your document. The Backstage view is covered in the next lesson.

Tool Tabs

In addition to the main tabs, there are numerous tool tabs which include less commonly used commands. Individual tool tabs are covered in detail in our intermediate and advanced Microsoft Word classes. For now you should know:

  • That they exist. Some of the most commonly used tool tabs are:
    • SmartArt
    • Chart
    • Drawing
    • Picture
    • Table
    • Header & Footer
  • That they will appear when you select commands which have related tool tabs. For example, when you insert a table, two table-specific tool tabs (Design and Layout) will appear: