How to Make Columns in Microsoft Word: A Step-by-Step Guide

Making columns in Microsoft Word might seem daunting, but it’s actually pretty straightforward. By using the ‘Columns’ feature under the ‘Page Layout’ or ‘Layout’ tab, you can easily organize your text into neat, professional-looking sections. If you want to create a newsletter, a menu, or simply want to enhance the look of your document, columns are the way to go. After reading this brief explanation, you’ll have a solid grasp on how to create columns and enhance your Word documents.

Step by Step Tutorial: Making Columns in Microsoft Word

Creating columns in Microsoft Word is a simple way to organize text and give your document a polished look. Whether you’re writing a newsletter or designing a menu, columns can help your content stand out. Let’s walk through the steps to create columns in Word.

Step 1: Open Microsoft Word and select your document

Open the Microsoft Word application and choose the document you want to format with columns.

When you open Word, you’ll either see a blank document or the last document you were working on. If it’s the latter, simply go to the ‘File’ menu, click on ‘Open’, and select the document you want to format.

Step 2: Highlight the text you want to format

Click and drag your mouse over the text that you want to divide into columns.

It’s important to note that you don’t have to format your entire document with columns. You can select a specific section or even just a paragraph. Just make sure the text you want in columns is highlighted before moving on to the next step.

Step 3: Go to the ‘Page Layout’ or ‘Layout’ tab

Find and click on the ‘Page Layout’ or ‘Layout’ tab in the ribbon at the top of Word.

The name of this tab can vary depending on your version of Word. In most recent versions, it’s called ‘Layout’. This is where you’ll find all the options for formatting your document.

Step 4: Click on ‘Columns’

In the ‘Page Layout’ or ‘Layout’ tab, click on the ‘Columns’ button.

After clicking on ‘Columns’, a dropdown menu will appear with different options for column layouts. You can choose a preset layout or customize the number of columns you want.

Step 5: Choose the number of columns

Select the number of columns you want from the dropdown menu or click ‘More Columns’ to customize further.

If the presets don’t fit your needs, ‘More Columns’ will open a new dialog box where you can set the exact number of columns, the spacing between them, and whether you want a line to separate them.

After completing these steps, your selected text will be formatted into the number of columns you chose. The text will flow from one column to the next, making your document look tidy and professional.

Tips for Making Columns in Microsoft Word

  • Always preview your document before finalizing the column layout to ensure the text flows logically from one column to the next.
  • If your document has headings, consider keeping them outside of the columns for a cleaner look.
  • Adjust the spacing between columns to ensure the text is readable and not too cramped.
  • Use the ‘Column Break’ feature to control where text ends in one column and begins in the next.
  • Experiment with different column layouts to find the one that works best for your content and purpose.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I undo the column formatting if I change my mind?

If you want to revert to the original layout, simply highlight the text again, go to ‘Columns’, and select ‘One’ to return to a single-column format.

Can I add columns to only part of my document?

Yes, you can format just a section of your document with columns by highlighting the specific text you want to modify before following the steps above.

Is it possible to have different numbers of columns on the same page?

Absolutely! You can have multiple sections with different column layouts on the same page by formatting each section separately.

How can I ensure that my text stays within the columns I’ve created?

Word automatically flows the text within the columns you create. However, you can use ‘Column Break’ to fine-tune the text flow.

Can I add a line between the columns?

Yes, when customizing your columns, you can check the option to add a line between columns to visually separate them.


  1. Open Microsoft Word and select your document.
  2. Highlight the text to format.
  3. Click the ‘Page Layout’ or ‘Layout’ tab.
  4. Select ‘Columns’.
  5. Choose the number of columns or customize further.


Mastering the art of making columns in Microsoft Word can significantly enhance the readability and aesthetic appeal of your documents. Whether you’re looking to create a newsletter, a menu, or simply want to organize your text in a more visually appealing way, columns are a fantastic tool at your disposal. The key is to practice and experiment with different column layouts to find what works best for your specific needs.

Don’t hesitate to try out different spacing options, column counts, and even adding lines between your columns to achieve the perfect look for your document. And remember, if you ever run into trouble or need to tweak your layout, Microsoft Word makes it easy to adjust your columns on the fly. Now that you know how to make columns in Microsoft Word, the only limit is your creativity. So go ahead, give it a try, and watch your documents transform!

Join Our Free Newsletter

Featured guides and deals

You may opt out at any time. Read our Privacy Policy