Monday, April 21, 2014

Adding Comments to Word Documents

A print screen of a Word 2010 document with added comments.
Adding Comments in a Word Document Helps Streamline the Review Process

Have you ever wished you could add questions or comments to your writing to get extra help from your reviewer?  Have you ever wanted to make a note to yourself as you're writing so you can remember to look at something later?  You can!

Comments are notes a writer or proofreader can add to a Word document.  Writers and readers can both add comments to a document, to themselves or to each other, making the revising and editing processes more efficient.

Adding Comments to Text

Before a comment can be added a Word document, the reviewer must determine where the comment will be most beneficial.  The reviewer has to decide to which word, phrase, sentence, or paragraph the comment will apply. For example, if the comment is about proper comma use, the reviewer should highlight the comma and perhaps the phrase, clause, or sentence related to the comma.  In order to choose the text, the reviewer should highlight the text by holding the left mouse button and scrolling over the chosen text.  After the text is highlighted, the reviewer can release the mouse button.

The Comment Function and The Review Tab

Because comments are used extensively when a writer or reader is reviewing a document, the comment function can be found under the "Review" tab.  In order to add a comment to a piece of text, after highlighting the text the reviewer should choose "Review" > "Add Comment."   A text box will appear in the right margin.   The text box will be initialed and numbered.  The comments will print if the document is printed, or they will be saved if the document is saved.  An additional reviewer's comments will be a different color and will have that person's initials.  

Reviewing Comments

A print screen of a Word 2010 document with added comments.
Comments are Easily Navigated
Once a document is reviewed and comments are added, those comments can also be navigated and deleted from the Ribbon Toolbar.  The writer or reviewer can scroll through each comment using the "Previous" and "Next" buttons, or they can be deleted one at a time or all at once.  

Additionally, comments can be deleted directly from the comment.  The reviewer simply uses the right mouse button to click on the comment, and a comment menu will appear.  

A print screen of a Word 2010 document with added comments and menu.
The Comment Menu Offers Several Formatting Options

Next time you truly feel the need to ask your reviewer a question or make a comment about your writing, feel free to use the Comments function in Microsoft Word.  When writers and reviewers use the Comment function, reviewing is made more efficient in the process.  

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Copyright Amy Lynn Hess.  Please contact the author for permission to reproduce.

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