How to track changes in Word.

A man using Track Changes on a document in Word.

Master the art of collaboration. Learn how to track changes in Microsoft Word and streamline your editing process.

You often have to go through multiple revisions when writing personal and business documents. Plus, as you edit them, you need to keep track of what you’ve changed in each draft. Read on to learn how to use Track Changes in Microsoft Word to easily keep on top of document versions.

What is Track Changes in Word documents?

Track Changes in Word documents is a feature that allows users to keep a record of edits and revisions made to a document. When enabled, any modifications such as insertions, deletions, or formatting changes are highlighted and attributed to specific authors.

This collaborative tool is particularly useful when multiple individuals work on the same document, as it enables easy identification and review of changes. It promotes efficient collaboration by providing a transparent and traceable history of edits, facilitating discussions, and ensuring all stakeholders can contribute and review the document’s progress.

Track Changes helps maintain version control, improves document accuracy, and streamlines editing and proofreading by allowing users to accept or reject modifications selectively. This feature enhances user communication and collaboration, making it an invaluable tool for teams and individuals working on document-based projects.

How to use Track Changes in Word documents.

It’s easy to start tracking changes in a Word document. Follow these steps:

  1. Select the Review tab in the top toolbar.
  2. Select Track Changes.
  3. Adjust tracking settings with the three dropdown menus next to the button.

Word will strike through all deleted text and underline new text with tracking turned on. That way, you and anyone else can easily see what changes you’ve made. When you’re done editing your document, you can turn tracking off by selecting the Track Changes button again.

How to turn off Track Changes in Word documents.

To turn off Track Changes in Word documents, follow these simple steps:

  1. Navigate to the Review tab in the Word ribbon.
  2. Locate the Track Changes button.
  3. Click it to toggle off the feature.

Alternatively, you can use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Shift+E if you have a PC or Command+Shift+E if you have a Mac to turn off Track Changes. Once that’s disabled, any further edits or revisions will no longer be tracked, allowing you to work on the document without the changes being recorded.

Dos and don’ts when you track changes in Word.

The Track Changes feature provides a powerful tool to track and review modifications, enabling teams to work together efficiently and maintain version control. To make the most of this feature, you can follow certain best practices and avoid common pitfalls.



Forget to use Track Changes in Word? Use a PDF.

Although it’s easy to track changes in Word, it’s also easy to forget to activate change tracking. As a result, you — or someone you shared the file with — could make changes the tracker didn’t catch, leading to unwelcome surprises down the line.

You can avoid this issue by saving your Word document as a PDF. You can then add comments to the PDF file with PDF editing software like Adobe Acrobat. With Acrobat, you can easily mark text for deletion, suggest different phrasings, and leave general comments. In addition to making comments, you can learn how to strike through in PDF files.

Once your comments are in the document, you can make corrections and changes to the original Word document. This way, you can ensure nobody makes untracked changes to your documents.

Discover what more you can do with Adobe Acrobat online services to edit, convert, and share PDF files.