Creating a Table of Contents in Word

I may be doing this tip more for myself, as I always tend to forget how to do it. 🙂

If you have a long Word document, it can be hard to navigate around to get to important parts (I know… it’s all important, right?). With the use of text styling, you can create a Table of Contents (TOC) that will help your readers get to the important material quickly.

For an example, let’s start with this 3 paragraph document:


To create your TOC entries, you need to turn the paragraph titles into Headings. To do that, highlight the title and click Heading 1 in the Styles section:


You could also have Heading 2, Heading 3, and so on. Those will be indented entries on your TOC if you choose to use them.

To create the TOC, find a blank spot in your document and select References > Table of Contents:


You’ll be shown a series of styles to use as your TOC. Pick one that works for you:


Voilà! You now have a Table of Contents that is linked to the content in your document:


You can add content, new headers, and do whatever you’d like with your document. When you’re ready to update your TOC, just click anywhere within the TOC and click the Update Table option. From there, you can have the entire TOC updated (if you’ve added new headers and such), or you can just have the page numbers updated (if you just added more text within each header area).



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