How to Track Changes in Word: Leave Constructive Feedback

June 11, 2019

It’s always a good idea to get a second pair of eyes on your writing.

Considering how commonplace it has become for teams to use their documents as spaces for collaboration, it’s vital to know how to make suggestions to documents without changing the content they produced wholesale.

Activating this functionality in Microsoft Word is easier than you think! Keep reading to find out how to make the best use of this tool.

How to track changes in Word

Microsoft Word is a wonderful tool not only for helping out your peers, but also receiving feedback on your own work. There are a few ways to approach this part of the software’s functionality, but we’ve compiled the most widely used here.

Now read on for a breakdown of all the different ways you can use this tool to improve your collaborative potential!

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Making changes to a document

In the latest versions of Microsoft Word, you want to go to the ‘review’ tab and select ‘track changes.’ While it’s turned on, deletions will be marked with a strikethrough while the suggested changes will appear alongside the original text with an underline. If more than one author makes changes to a document, their edits will appear in different colors in the document.

how to track changes in word


Once you’ve finished making the desired edits, simply hit ‘track changes’ once again and the suggested edit you’ve made will stay in the document while you will be free to edit the text of the document directly once again.

Leaving comments

The review tab also allows you to leave comments based on any of the changes you’ve suggested to give more context or in-depth suggestions.

find track changes in menu bar

Viewing changes on your own work

In order to review the suggested edits made to your own documents, you want to go to the ‘Review’ tab, and under ‘Tracking’ select ‘Display for Review.’

track changes button in Word

You have a few options for how these changes can be presented to you. For a simple red line in the margin, choose ‘Simple Markup.’ If you’re looking for something a little more robust, select ‘All Markup.’ Finally, ‘No Markup’ will give you a seamless preview of how the document would look if you were to make all the suggested changes.

There you have it

Now you have everything you need to unlock your collaborative potential! Make sure to be thorough in the feedback you provide your peers and give their work the attention it deserves. Luckily, Microsoft Office makes this easier than ever.

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