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Word 2010 Proofing

You have several proofing tools in Word 2010; an automatic spell checker, grammar checker and a built in thesaurus.

Word 2010 Proofing File Review

The quickest way to uncover an error in your document is by seeing a red, blue or green squiggly line underneath a word or group of words. The red underline means a possible misspelling in the word you have typed, a blue underline could be a potential misuse of a word and the green underline means there is a possible grammatical error.

Word 2010 Misspelling and Grammatical errors

To quickly fix your errors as you type, you can right click your mouse on the word(s) that have been underlined. This will open a box with possible correct spelling or grammar suggestions available to you.

Word 2010 Proofing Autocorrect

If you see the correct option in the box, click on it and Word will automatically make the change in your document.

Spelling & Grammar

Word 2010 Proofing Spelling & Grammar

The most common proofing tool that Word has is spelling and grammar.

To start proofing your entire document for these types of errors, select Spelling & Grammar in the Proofing section of the Review tab. You can also select F7 on your keyboard to launch the Spelling & Grammar tool with your keyboard shortcut.

Word will start checking for errors and open up any potential errors in the Spelling and Grammar dialog box. The first possible error found is the word Engelbrecht. In this case, the word is a proper noun and the spelling is correct. Word does give us a suggestion of how to correct this word, but again, we know this word is already spelled correctly.

Word 2010 Spelling & Grammar Dialog Box

You have three options:

  1. Ignore Once - Word will continue to recognize this word as a possible misspelling.
  2. Ignore All - Word will not recognize Engelbrecht as an error throughout the rest of your document.
  3. Add  to Dictionary - Word will add this word to the Spelling & Grammar dictionary and not recognize the word as a misspelling again.

It is really your preference of which of these options works best. When you select one of the three options, Word will go onto the next possible error.

Word 2010 Grammar Fragment

Next, Word has detected a possible fragment. There are no suggestions given, but in this case we need to add a space between "5050" and "Silverwood". We can make the adjustment in the Fragment box and select Change.

The next possible error is an improper use of a word. We have used the word "too" and Word is suggesting we use the word "two". If you agree with Word's suggestion, just select Change.

You will notice that you have an Options button in the lower, left corner of the Spelling and Grammar dialog box. We will click on it to review the different options Word has for us.

As you can see, some options within Word's Proofing tools are already checked. You have the ability to check and uncheck any of these options or features to customize the proofing tools. When you are finished, select Ok.

Word 2010 Proofing Tools

When the spelling and grammar check has been completed, a dialog box will appear to inform you.


Word 2010 Research

The research proofing tool will give you access to reference books, such as the dictionary and thesaurus, research sites and a translation tool.

Word 2010 All Reference Books

You can gain access to these tools by selecting Research within the Proofing section of the Review tab. A panel will appear to the right of your document with all of the research options. Let's apply some of these tools, so we can show how they work in detail.

Word 2010 Encarta Dictionary

Follow the instructions above if you haven't already opened your research panel. Then type your word into the Search for box. In our example, we will type in the word "approximately".

In the next box, we will click on the arrow to open the drop down box and select the Encarta Dictionary then click on Green Arrow. Details of the word "approximately", including the definition, appear in the area below.

Now type a second word in the Search for box, leave the box below at All Reference Books and select Green Arrow. Below the All Reference Books box, you will now have the option to select the Back arrow to go to your previous word. The research tool stores your previous search in the tool, so you can easily transition back and forth between them as needed.

Select Thesaurus: English (U.S.) just below the Encarta Dictionary information. This will open the thesaurus and give you synonyms for the word you have in the Search for box.

Below the thesaurus, you have a Translation tool. You can choose which language you want to convert the word from (in the first box) and which language you want to convert the word to (in the second box). The translation will appear near the bottom of the pane.

Another function within the Translation tool is to translate the entire document. To do this, select Green Arrow which is found below the words, "Translate the whole document." A dialog box will appear with the following message, "Word is about to send the document for translation over the Internet in unencrypted HTML format. It will be translated by the Microsoft Translator service, located at Do you want to continue?" You have two options within the dialog box: Send and Do not send.

Next , you will see Translation options in blue text. You can click on this to familiarize yourself and see the options available. It allows you to customize the Bilingual Dictionary and Machine translation to your requirements.

At the bottom of the pane, there are two more functions: Get updates to your services (allows you to update and/or remove currently installed services and Research Options.

Word 2010 Research Options

Select Research Options and the Research Options dialog box appears. Near the bottom, Add Services, allows you to Add additional reference tools to your research pane. FYI: You must have the Internet address of the provider whose services you want to add. Once you have added a service, you want to select the next button, Update/Remove to get the service added to the Research pane. You would also remove any unwanted resources from your pane through Update/Remove.

Finally, there is a Parental Control feature to limit access within the research tools.


We discussed thesaurus briefly when covering the Research pane tools. We'll go into a little more depth on how to access this tool.

Word 2010 Proofing Thesaurus

First, you will want to highlight the word in your document you want to use the thesaurus for. Then select Thesaurus in the Proofing section of the Review tab.

Word 2010 Proofing Research Translation

You will notice the Research pane opens to the right of your document. Only the Thesaurus tool is showing, but you have the ability to change your reference book or open them all from the Search for boxes.

Another way to gain access to the thesaurus, is to right click your mouse on your word in the document. A menu of options will appear, including Synonyms. Select Synonyms and another box will appear with a list of synonyms to choose from. Select your desired word and Word will automatically insert it into your document.

Word 2010 Thesaurus: Synonyms

Word Count

Word 2010 Proofing: Word Count

Another feature you might find helpful is Word count. To initiate this tool, select Word Count from the Proofing section of the Review tab.

A Word Count dialog box will open with several different statistics. You can find the number of pages, words, characters with no spaces, characters with spaces, paragraphs and lines.

You can use the Word Count feature for the entire document or highlight a particular part of your document, then select Word Count. The Word Count dialog box information will now be specific to the area you selected prior to clicking the Word Count Button.

Next Tutorial

This concludes the Proofing tutorial.
Click next to continue to the Word 2010 Comments tutorial.