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In Word for Mac 2011 Essential Training, author Maria Langer shows how to create, format, and print a wide variety of documents in Microsoft Word 2011. The course covers building outlines, formatting text and pages, working with headers and footers, using themes and styles, adding multimedia, and more. It also shows how to customize and automate Word 2011, including how to record macros. Exercise files accompany the course.
If you create a table using Words tab table feature and realize that you really should have used the cell table feature, you can convert the tab table to a cell table. Likewise, Word also lets you convert a cell table to a tab table. This document has two tables in it: a tab table and a cell table. We'll convert each table to the other type. we'll do the tab table first. You need to start out by selecting all the rows in the table. So I'm going to bring my mouse point to over here is this selection bar, press the mouse button down and drag to all those rows.
Now I want to click the table's button up on the Ribbon, and then under the new menu here, I want to choose Convert Text to Table. Now this dialog has some settings that you can use to specify how this conversion should happen. What Word does is it looks at what's selected and it pretty much guesses what you want. In most cases it will probably guess right. It knows that I want four columns and seven rows. It has an AutoFit behavior area where I can turn on different AutoFit options if I want.
I probably would like to turn on AutoFit to contents. And you also need to make sure that the Separate text at area, that's down here, indicates that the columns are separated by tabs. Again, Word looked at this and it could see the tab, so it guessed that you wanted tabs. When all this is set properly, just click OK and Word makes the conversion. It's pretty straightforward. Now let's convert this other table here. Hold down the Option key and double-click on any of the contents on the table that selects the entire table.
Now pull down the Table menu, come down to Convert, and we'll want to do is to want convert the table to text. I should point out that we could have used this Convert Text to Table in the previous example. We want to Convert Table to Text, so we'll select that. And again, Word looks at what we've got and it asks us how we want to separate this information. We want to separate it by tabs, so we'll leave tabs turned on here and then click OK. Now what Word has done is it has converted that cell table to a tab table.
Now in each example the conversion process was completed quickly with a minimum amount of effort. And while you can convert in either direction, I think you're more likely to convert from tabs to cells, when you realize that a simple tab table just won't give you the flexibility you need to present information in table format. At least that's how it always seems to work out for me.
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