Find and Replace
When you're working with longer documents, it can be difficult and time consuming to locate a specific word or phrase. Word can automatically search your document using the Find feature, and it allows you to quickly change words or phrases using Replace.
To find text:
In our example, we've written an academic paper and will use the Find command to locate all references to a particular author's last name.
- From the Home tab, click the Find command.
- The navigation pane will appear on the left side of the screen.
- Type the text you want to find in the field at the top of the navigation pane. In our example, we'll type the author's last name.
- If the text is found in the document, it will be highlighted in yellow, and a preview of the results will appear in the navigation pane.
- If the text appears more than once, choose a review option to review each instance. When an instance of the text is selected, it will highlight in gray:
- Arrows: Use the arrows to move through the results one at a time.
- Results previews: Select a result preview to jump directly to the location of a specific result in your document.
- When you are finished, click the X to close the navigation pane. The highlighting will disappear.
You can also access the Find command by pressing Ctrl+F on your keyboard.
For more search options, click the drop-down arrow next to the search field.
To replace text:
At times, you may discover that you've made a mistake repeatedly throughout your document—such as misspelling a person's name—or that you need to exchange a particular word or phrase for another. You can use Word's Find and Replace feature to quickly make revisions. In our example, we'll use Find and Replace to change the title of a magazine so it is abbreviated.
- From the Home tab, click the Replace command.
- The Find and Replace dialog box will appear.
- Type the text you want to find in the Find what: field.
- Type the text you want to replace it with in the Replace with: field. Then click Find Next.
- Word will find the first instance of the text and highlight it in gray.
- Review the text to make sure you want to replace it. In our example, the text is part of the title of the paper and does not need to be replaced. We'll click Find Next again.
- Word will jump to the next instance of the text. If you want to replace it, select one of the replace options:
- Replace will replace individual instances of text. In our example, we'll choose this option.
- Replace All will replace every instance of the text throughout the document.
- The selected text will be replaced.
- When you're done, click X to close the dialog box.
You can also access the Find and Replace command by pressing Ctrl+H on your keyboard.
For more search options, click More in the Find and Replace dialog box. From here, you can select additional search options, such as matching case and ignoring punctuation.