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Microsoft Word 2008

Using the Sort Feature

Sorting tables is a feature designed for organizing lists that are contained within a table (e.g., experiment sites, number grades, bibliographies). You can sort a table by up to three columns, in either ascending or descending order. For example, you can sort a table of committee members initially by last name and then, within that sort, by first name. You can also sort numbers or dates. In addition, the Sort feature can be used for paragraph text outside of tables. This can be useful in creating bibliographies, glossaries, and other types of lists.

return to topSorting a Table

Sorting elements of your table is useful for organizing your data, whether that data consists of text, numbers, or dates. You can also perform subsequent sorts on the data, initially sorting by one criterion and then sorting by a second criterion within that sort.

  1. Select the table or column(s) to be sorted

  2. On the Command bar, from the Table pull-down menu, select Sort...
    The Sort dialog box appears.
    Sort dialog box

  3. From the Sort by pull-down menu, select the first column by which to sort
    HINT: If your table contains a row with headings that should be excluded from the sort, in the My list has section, select Header row.

  4. From the Type pull-down menu, select Text, Number, or Date

  5. Select Ascending or Descending order

  6. OPTIONAL: To sort additional columns, from the Then by pull-down menus, select the desired sorting criteria

  7. OPTIONAL: To make the sort case-sensitive,
    1. Click OPTIONS...
      The Sort Options dialog box appears.
    2. Under Sort options, select Case sensitive
    3. Click OK

  8. Click OK

return to topSorting a List

The Sort feature and various sorting options can also be used non-tabled text. This feature can be particularly helpful for sorting bibliographies, glossary entries, indexing, lists of names, and so on.

  1. Select the list to be sorted

  2. On the Command bar, from the Table pull-down menu, select Sort...
    The Sort Text dialog box appears.
    Sort dialog box
  3. From the Sort by pull-down menu, select whether your text should be sorted according to paragraphs or fields

  4. From the Type pull-down menu, select Text, Number, or Date

  5. Select Ascending or Descending order

  6. OPTIONAL: To sort additional fields, from the Then by pull-down menus, select the desired sorting criteria

  7. OPTIONAL: To make the sort case-sensitive,
    1. Click OPTIONS...
      The Sort Options dialog box appears.
    2. Under Sort options, select Case sensitive
    3. Click OK

  8. Click OK

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