Working With Tables: Navigating and Selecting

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Moving Between Table Cells

The easiest way to move between cells in a table is to use the mouse to click on the cell you want. Pressing the tab key will jump the cursor to the next cell, left to right, as is the English reader’s habit. Hold down shift to tab backwards.

Selecting Cells

To select a single cell, triple-click on its contents using the mouse.

Keeping your hands on the keys is often a faster option:

  1. Place the cursor at the start of the text you want to select.
  2. Hold shift while you arrow to the end of your selection.

Selecting Whole Rows or Columns

Using the mouse

Hover the pointer just outside the edge of the table either above the column you want to select or to the left of the desired row. When the pointer turns into an arrow, click the mouse.

To select more rows/columns, keep holding down the mouse button while you drag the pointer across them. Just release the mouse to finish selecting.

Using the ribbon

Click somewhere in the desired row or column. Then on the Layout ribbon, click the Select icon at the far left, then choose from the options.


It is possible to select a row by dragging the cursor from one edge to the other. But if you don’t select the marker at the end of the row, it selects only the cells, not the whole row.

Check out all the other posts in this series about Working with Tables and download your free multimedia ebook of them all!

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