Track Changes is a feature of Word that lets each person on the team show their suggested revisions and leave comments “attached” to content without becoming part of the content itself (and thus avoiding the disastrous embarassement of comments making it into the final product).
Download this 132 kb file, then try the steps below. Check your work against the answer figure shown at the end.
What to Do
Test out the functions of Track Changes by following the steps below. To verify your understanding, check your work on the sample file against the answer key shown below. Errors were added to this file and the edits are nonsense, obviously; they’re only helping you practice the tool, not your command of grammar or style. For more detailed instructions and a demo video, look inside the book.
- Turn on Track Changes from the Review ribbon.
- On the first boldface line, that it to for which, then delete the for at the end.
- Delete these principles from paragraph 4.
- Set the “Parts of thine Graph” heading to Heading1 style.
- In that heading, capitalize thine.
- Change the bracketed figure number to “Fig. 3.”
- Delete the spaces around the em dashes.
- Change the figure caption label to all caps.
- In the second-last paragraph, change for example to shown.
- Move the first sentence under the 1.2 heading down one sentence.
- Add a comment querying where the rest of the text is.
With changes shown inline, you should now have tracked changes as shown below. Note that your heading style might look slightly different. That’s ok this time; it’s addressed elsewhere.
Track Changes can look different for each user since each user has the choice of showing changes in different colours, inline or in balloons, or hide them completely! This answer is showing “all changes inline,” with deletions set to grey strikeout and insertions set to underlined teal. Red strikeout and underline are the default, respectively.
Watch out for missing or extra spaces around deletions and insertions. A skimming in “No Markup” of “Simple markup” can help spot those, as can the red squiggles underlining the resulting “misspellings.”
If the change to all caps didn’t track, it’s likely because you used the Change Case button on the Home ribbon. If you want the change tracked, you have to type each letter manually.
If moving the sentence didn’t track as a move (note the double underlining and double strikeout in the answer key), try these suggestions.
Got a gnarly Word problem? Submit your problem and we’ll try to answer it in the Q&A thread.
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