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Creating a Split Page

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Creating a Split Page.

WordPerfect has a feature that allows you to create a "split page," meaning that you can create different "zones" on a page, and place them side-by-side. This feature was great for creating information that must be laid out side-by-side, such as student material and teacher commentary on that material.

Those coming to Word from a WordPerfect environment may wonder how you can create a split page layout in Word. The best way is through the use of tables in Word. Even for very long documents you can use tables to create side-by-side information. Follow these general steps:

  1. Open a new document and set the paper orientation and margins the way you want.
  2. Insert a three-column, single-row table in your document.
  3. Remove the borders around the table, if desired.
  4. Format the second (center) column to be rather narrow. This column will serve as the margin between the left and right columns.
  5. Adjust the width of the other columns as desired.
  6. Make sure the cells are formatted so that their contents can break across pages.
  7. In the left column, enter your student information; in the right column enter the related teacher commentary.
  8. Whenever you need to "align" or "synchronize" the contents in the columns, start a new row.

Using this technique, you can create documents of virtually any length you desire. The only thing you should be careful of is that you start a new row periodically. Word has been known to go "flaky" when creating tables that have a single row extending for pages and pages.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (9409) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Creating a Split Page.

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