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Collapsing and Expanding Subdocuments

Word allows you to organize your documents into a hierarchical relationship, such that one document is considered a master document and others are considered subdocuments. Many people use master documents to aggregate information presented in several subdocuments—for instance, each subdocument may represent a chapter in a book and the master document represents the entire book.

As you are working with your master document, you may find it handy (at times) to not see your entire subdocuments. Instead, you can view your subdocuments as simple links, instead of as an entire file. These links look very similar to hyperlinks: they are simply filenames shown in blue and underlined. When you move the mouse pointer over the link, it changes to a pointing finger. If you then click on the link, Word opens the subdocument in its own window.

When Word displays subdocuments as links, in Word terminology they (the subdocuments) are collapsed. When they are displayed as full files, they are expanded. To collapse your subdocuments, all you need to do is click your mouse on the Collapse Subdocuments tool on the Outline toolbar. If you later want to expand your subdocuments, you simply click your mouse on the Expand Subdocuments tool.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (882) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

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Comments for this tip:

Vince    26 Jun 2015, 09:55

I am preparing a rather large document for a school project and I am trying to figure out how to keep my sub-documents from collapsing. is there a setting in word that I can select so I do not have to manually go in and expand them to view the document as I would want my professor to see it.

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