Word Processing

Microsoft Word is the main word processing package used in school and the instructions given here are for the 2010 version of the software.

Titles and Headings

When using writing reports, pupils should use titles and headings. Pupils can of course use bold and underline to create their own headings but the built-in functionality in Word is generally easier – and allows more functionality later on.




Newer versions of Word also allow you to change the style, colour and fonts of text within pre-defined styles.


Word Art should not be used as it is hard to read. Additionally it is not spellchecked.

Headers and Footers

Multi-page documents such as reports should always have a header (appears at the top of every page) and a footer (appears at the bottom of every page). As a rule these should contain the name, document title, page number and date. It doesn’t matter whether this information appears in the header or the footer. Word contains some good built-in header and footer styles that have some of the information in already.



The date and page number should never be typed in – this should be set automatically.



Bulleted and Numbered Lists

When using ICT, a variety of ways of presenting information should be used depending upon the data or information. Numbered and bullet-point lists should be used and can also be combined with indents.



Data can be presented using tables, graphs and diagrams.


Tables can be formatted using the Table Tools options (highlighted in yellow at the top of the screen when the cursor is in the table).


Graphs can be created within Word by clicking on Insert – Chart. A sample graph and spreadsheet then appear side-by-side. The data in the spreadsheet can be changed and the graph will change automatically. The spreadsheet is saved within the Word document not a separate file. It can be changed by clicking on the graph.


Graphs should always have a title and axis titles (see numeracy). This can be done in Word using the Chart Tools highlighted in green.



Diagrams can also be used to display data more creatively. Word (and PowerPoint) contains a powerful new feature called SmartArt which allows for a lot of flexibility.


SmartArt is particularly good for:

  • relationships
  • cycles
  • lists
  • processes
  • heirarchies

Some of the diagrams can also include pictures.

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