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Microsoft Word 2007/2008

Navigating and Selecting within a Table

Because table cells usually require unique information and/or formatting, a good understanding of Word's cell navigation and selection options can save time and prevent frustration when working with tables. And while you can navigate and select with either your mouse or your keyboard, most users prefer one method over the other. Accordingly, this document discusses all navigation and selection options while focusing on time-saving keyboard combinations.

return to topUsing the Tab Key for Alignment

Within a table, the [Tab] key is used to move between cells, rather than for its traditional function of inserting tabs.

To use the [Tab] key for alignment within a table cell:

  1. Set the tab
    For information on how to set tabs, refer to Setting Tabs.

  2. Place the insertion point within the cell that contains the tab stop

  3. Press [Ctrl] + [Tab]

return to topNavigating within a Table Using Keys

You can use the keyboard to navigate through your table. The following table illustrates these keyboard shortcuts and their functions.

To Move to... Press...
Next cell [Tab]
OR
[Right Arrow]
Previous cell [Shift] + [Tab]
OR
[Left Arrow]
Next row [Down Arrow]
Previous row [Up Arrow]
Add a tab for alignment within a cell [Ctrl] + [Tab]
First cell in a row Macintosh: [Ctrl] + [Home]
Windows: [Alt] + [Home]
Last cell in a row Macintosh: [Ctrl] + [End]
Windows: [Alt] + [End]
First cell in a column Macintosh: [Ctrl] + [Page Up]
Windows: [Alt] + [Page Up]
Last cell in a column Macintosh: [Ctrl] + [Page Down]
Windows: [Alt] + [Page Down]

 

return to top Selecting within a Table

You can use the keyboard and mouse to select cells and data in your table.

To Select... Steps
Data in next cell [Tab]
NOTE: There must be data (e.g., text) in the cell for this option to work; if the cell is empty the [Tab] key only moves to the cell without selecting it.
Data in previous cell [Shift] + [Tab]
NOTE: There must be data (e.g., text) in the cell for this option to work; if the cell is empty the [Tab] key only moves to the cell without selecting it.
Entire row Click and drag your mouse across the row
OR
Hold your mouse at the left of the row; when an arrowRight arrow cursor used to select a table rowappears, click to select the row
Entire column Click and drag your mouse down the column
OR
Hold your mouse at the top of the column; when a down arrowDown arrow used to select a table column appears, click to select the column
Entire table With the number lock off, press [Alt] + [5]
NOTE: The [5] must be pressed from the 10-key pad.
Multiple contiguous cells,
rows, or columns
Click and drag your mouse across the cells
Multiple non-contiguous
cells, rows, or columns
Windows: Make your first selection; then press [Ctrl] + click and drag across additional cells, rows, or columns
Macintosh: Make your first selection; then press [Cmd] + click and drag across additional cells, rows, or columns

Windows only:

To Select... Steps
Entire table With the number lock off, press [Alt] + [5]
NOTE: The [5] must be pressed from the 10-key pad.
Multiple non-contiguous
cells, rows, or columns
Make your first selection; then press [Ctrl] + click and drag across additional cells, rows, or columns

 

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