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Word 2013 cheat sheet

Preston Gralla | July 1, 2015
The buzz today may be all about Office 2016 for Windows, which is due to be released this fall, but many business users are still getting acquainted with Office 2013 and will continue to use it for some time. Use this Word 2013 cheat sheet to help take advantage of all it has to offer.

More Word 2013 features to know about

There are other changes you'll find in Word 2013. Here are the most important ones.

Alignment guides

If you use Word to create documents with pictures in them, you'll welcome Word 2013's alignment guides. They help you precisely align photos, graphics, shapes and charts with the text in your document. They appear when you need them -- place the object where you want it to be, click the object and then click the small icon to its right.

When you do that, a menu appears that lets you choose various layouts for how you want the object to work with the text -- for example, you can have the text wrap around it, have the text appear above and below it, or even have the text appear in front of it. To change the alignment again after you've changed it already, simply click the object again and use the alignment guides to choose the alignment you want.

Work with PDFs

PDFs and Word have long been at odds -- in previous versions of Word you couldn't read or edit a PDF document. In Word 2013, that's changed. You can now choose File --> Open and select a PDF to open it.

When you open a PDF, Word 2013 converts it to a Word .docx document. It does its best to preserve formatting, graphics and so on. It generally does a good job, although I've found that graphics-heavy documents sometimes have problems. I've also found that sometimes Word puts odd line breaks in the middle of sentences. So if you do open a PDF to edit, check it carefully.

You can edit the file as you would any other .docx file, including using comments and tracking changes. You can then save it in any of the usual Word 2013 formats, including as a PDF.

Easier Ribbon control

How much of the Ribbon do you want to see as you work? Would you like it to go away? Do you want to see the tabs only? Or do you prefer the whole nine yards -- tabs with commands underneath them?

Word 2013 makes it easy to pick one. On the upper-right portion of the screen, click the icon of a rectangular window with an up arrow on it, and a menu drops down that lets you choose among those three views.

Automatic bookmarks to aid your memory

One new feature in Word 2013 can end up saving you a considerable amount of time. When you stop writing, editing or reading a document, a bookmark is placed in the last place you scrolled. Then, the next time you open the document, you'll be asked if you want to go to where you left off. If you've synced the document to OneDrive, when you next open the document from OneDrive or another device, you can go to that same bookmarked spot.


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