How to Use Track Changes in MIcrosoft Word

by Jennifer Walker

When you are working on a document in Microsoft Word as a collaboration with another person, you may find Track Changes to be a very useful feature. This option marks every change you make to the document and allows the next reader to approve or reject each change. This is often used in work settings when one person is reviewing another person’s working and making changes or suggestions. The publishing industry often uses Track Changes in Microsoft Word during the editing process so the author can see and approve any changes to a manuscript.

Microsoft Word 2007

Open the document in Microsoft Word.

Turn on Track Changes before making any changes to the document. Select the "Review" menu. In the Tracking section, click on the "Track Changes" button. When Track Changes is turned on, the button will turn orange.

Customize the tracking options by clicking on the down-pointing arrow in the lower-right hand corner of the Track Changes button and then selecting "Change Tracking Options" or "Change User Name," as needed. When you have made your selections, click "OK."

Make your changes to the document as needed. Microsoft Word will mark each one, either by changing the color and underlining it or by making a bubble on the right-hand side of the page, depending on the change.

Right-click to approve or reject changes. The pop-up menu will give you an option to approve or reject. Click on the appropriate choice and Microsoft Word will make the change.

Select the "Review" menu and then click the Track Changes button in the Tracking section to turn off Track Changes. The button should change from orange to the default color (usually a sort of bluish-grey). Microsoft Word will no longer mark the changes you make.

Microsoft Word 1997-2003

Open the document in Microsoft Word.

Turn on Track Changes before making any changes to the document. Select the "Tools" menu and then click on the Track Changes button. When Track Changes is turned on, the button will turn orange.

Make your changes to the document as needed. Microsoft Word will mark each one, either by changing the color and underlining it or by making a bubble on the right-hand side of the page, depending on the change.

Right-click to approve or reject changes. The pop-up menu will give you an option to approve or reject. Click on the appropriate choice and Microsoft Word will make the change.

Select the Tools menu and then click the Track Changes button to turn off Track Changes. The button should change from orange to the default color (usually a sort of bluish-grey). Microsoft Word will no longer mark the changes you make.

About the Author

Jennifer Walker has been writing for several years. She has been published in a number of places both online and in print, including Modern Arabian Horse, a monthly editorial in Horseman's News, and One Magazine Denver. She has several books in various stages of completion and is a full-time freelancer.