AutoCorrect in Word is one of those features that will save you lots of time and effort. AutoCorrect is used to correct typos and misspellings and also to substitute the characters you type for symbols.
At the precise moment you finish typing a word – by pressing the spacebar, typing a period, or using some other punctuation – Word searches the list of typos and misspellings it knows about. If it thinks you’ve made a typo, it will correct it automatically for you. AutoCorrect is set up by default with a list of typical misspellings and symbols that uses commonly make, but you can modify the list that AutoCorrect uses.
Using Word’s AutoCorrect is also a great way to save time typing out long pieces of text, too. For example, you could set up the abbreviation cdc in the AutoCorrect list to be substituted by the phrase Centers for Disease Control. Once set up, each time you type “cdc” and press the spacebar, those letters will be replaced by “Centers for Disease Control”.
The AutoCorrect list is global across all the Microsoft Office 2010 programs that support this feature, which means that when you add or delete a word from the list in one Microsoft Office program, the other Office programs are also updated.
Word AutoCorrect Options
You can customize the way that Word AutoCorrect works: click the File tab > Options > Proofing, and then click the AutoCorrect Options button near the top of the window.
The AutoCorrect window has many tabs, but when it opens, it will display the AutoCorrect tab. The options at the top are basically a list of yes/no questions in the form of checkboxes, described as follows:
- Show AutoCorrect Options buttons – after an autocorrection has been applied, if you hover over the corrected word you’ll see the AutoCorrect Options button appear (see below). This checkbox turns it off.
- Correct TWo INitial CApitals – with this option checked, this sentence would become “Two Initial Capitals”
- Capitalize first letter of sentences – fairly self explanatory.
- Capitalize first letter of table cells – similar to the above option, except that table cell contents are treated in isolation. When you tab to the next cell, or press the spacebar, for example, the capital letter is applied to the first letter of the first word in the cell.
- Capitalize names of days – Word recognises the names of the days (there are only seven, after all) and when this option is checked, day names with lowercase initial letters are corrected.
- Correct accidental usage of cAPS LOCK key – Word can detect when you’ve accidentally left the Caps Lock button on and corrects the text you type.
- Replace text as you type – this section is geared towards setting up “shortcuts” for long pieces of text that would be tedious to type in. To set up “cdc” to be converted to “Centers for Disease Control”, see the image below.
Once you’ve made changes on the AutoCorrect window, click OK to save them. The changes you make take immediate effect.