Make Word your editor by checking writing style (in addition to spelling and grammar) as you type

Provided by Molly Pell, Senior Systems Analyst

By default, Microsoft Office Word checks spelling and grammar as you type, saving you from embarrassing typos and grammatical mistakes. But did you know that you can improve your documents even more by checking style and other preferences? In addition to the default Spelling & Grammar options, you can customize Word to check your documents for the following style preferences:

  • Commas before the last item in a list
  • Punctuation inside of quotes
  • Spacing between sentences
  • Clichés, colloquialisms, and jargon
  • Gender-specific words
  • Misused words
  • Passive sentences
  • Long sentences
  • Wordiness
  • Etc.

First, select “Tools, Options” from the Word menu, and go to the Spelling & Grammar tab:

On this tab, change the “Writing style” option to “Grammar & Style,” and select the desired options:

It may take some trial and error to determine exactly which preferences are right for you or your organization, but these style suggestions can dramatically improve your documents almost immediately.

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