Microsoft Word online course: The syllabus

Microsoft Word is perhaps one of the most used of all the office applications. It’s also probably one of the most badly used of all the office applications. Although pretty much anyone can type words into a blank Word document, there’s a massive difference between being able to use Word and being able to use it effectively and efficiently.

Our course syllabus doesn’t waste your time on obvious areas that everyone knows already. Instead we concentrate on showing you how to save time in the areas that you use frequently and also cover some of the less-used features in Word that can help extend what you can do with Word and improve the quality of the documents you create.

Of course, not everyone needs to use all the features within Word, so our course is designed around our ‘Filter’ concept. The Filter asks a few relevant questions about what you use Word for, how proficient you need to be in various areas of Word and your current level of proficiency. Your answers enable us to create a personalised learning programme for you that prioritises the different modules of our course.

Our course currently covers Word 2007 and 2010.

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Course content levels

Our course is divided into 5 sections, each containing a number of units, and each unit in turn being split into a series of modules.


Units and Modules

Section 1: Foundation

Unit 1.1 - The Word Interface:

Tips and tricks to make the ribbon interface speed up everything you do. How to use the Word navigation pane to jump immediately to the right place in your document. The different Word views and which to use when.

Unit 1.2 - A Simple Letter

Creating a letter with the minimum of fuss

Unit 1.3 - Typing in the Right Place

Using Page Setup to save time whenever you create any document.

Unit 1.4 - Simple Paragraph Formatting

Making sure your paragraphs behave exactly how you want them to including spacing, how to avoid ending up with one line of your paragraph on page 2 and how using Word Styles is guaranteed to make anyone’s use of Word quicker and better.

Unit 1.5 - Templates

Understanding what the ‘Normal’ template is all about. Creating a Template to cope automatically with letterhead and continuation stationery. Adding standard content to a Template, including the right way to include the date.

Unit 1.6 - A Simple Letter. Better. Faster

Using all the techniques covered in the section to produce a better looking letter in a fraction of the time it took 5 modules ago.


Section 2: Basics

Unit 2.1 - Font Formatting

How not to waste millions of seconds throughout your working life formatting words inefficiently. Some of the less well-known, but still useful, font formatting commands. The Format Painter – double the fun.

Unit 2.2 - Paragraph Formatting

How to use a range of different paragraph formats from the straightforward to the less obvious.

Unit 2.3 - Styles and Themes

Why Word Styles can change your life and how to manage them. Using Themes to format an entire document with a single click.

Unit 2.4 - Pages and Sections

Using headers and footers including documents where odd and even pages need to be different. The importance of Sections and how they allow you to include a landscape page in the middle of an otherwise portrait document.

Unit 2.5 - Automating Word

How Word’s Building Blocks help you add all sorts of Word content quickly and easily and how you can turn your own content into a re-usable Building Block. The hidden capabilities of Word’s search feature.

Unit 2.6 - Spelling and Grammar

Using the Spelling and Grammar checker. How to tame AutoCorrect and AutoFormat. Let the Thesaurus help you find the right word and the research pane to explain what it means.


Section 3: Common Tasks

Unit 3.1 - Lists, Tables and Schedules of Figures

From simple lists to complicated schedules. The hidden depths of Word’s Tables feature and why you only need to suffer the pain once.

Unit 3.2 - Envelopes and Labels

Producing envelopes and labels – making sure the right text appears in the right place.

Unit 3.3 - Mail Merge

How to use your Outlook Contact addresses in Word. Using Mail Merge to produce separate letters, envelopes or label for all of your customers. Advanced users of Mail Merge including calculations and conditional content.

Unit 3.4 - Graphics

The range of graphics that you can include in a Word document including why the SmartArt feature is much more Smart than Art and how to include and format pictures, shapes, business diagrams and Charts. Allowing graphics and text to live together in harmony – the secrets of Layout and Word Wrap.

Unit 3.5 - Create a Newsletter

Pages with multiple columns. Inserting graphics and wrapping text around them. From simple text boxes to text that flows from box to box. How to print a booklet.

Unit 3.6 - Tips and Shortcuts

Troubleshooting Word documents that someone else has mangled (or that have just gone a bit wrong).


Section 4: Administration

Unit 4.1 - Working Collaboratively

The career-threatening dangers of sharing Word documents and how to avoid them. Using track changes when collaborating on documents. Word’s Web App and collaborating on Word documents on the Internet.

Unit 4.2 - Printing and Other Output Formats

Printing and saving directly to PDF.

Unit 4.3 - Customising Word

A comprehensive guide to the Word options that can make Word work the way you want it to.

Unit 4.4 - Housekeeping

Managing files and folders. Some guidance on passwords.

Unit 4.5 - Basic Use of Macros

An introduction to simple macros and macro security based on the practical example of creating a new letter with a single click.


Section 5: Taking Word Further

Unit 5.1 - Forms and Form Fields

Working with Fields to help users produce documents quickly and accurately. Creating Forms in Word for users to fill-in.

Unit 5.2 - Complex Numbering

Why Outline Numbering is the only way to implement a complex numbering scheme without driving you to distraction and the other advantages that Outline Numbering gives: automatic tables of contents and cross-references.

Unit 5.3 - Coping with Long Documents

The power of sections. Working with Master and Sub-documents. Incorporating references in Word documents: endnotes, footnotes, citations and bibliography, table of authorities and picture and diagram captions. Building an index to a Word document.


Filter your Word course for free here and find out how your personalised course syllabus would look like!