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Cross-referencing to an Automatic Number

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Cross-referencing to an Automatic Number.

Jennifer wonders if there is a way to cross reference only the number portion of a field-based number. For example, she wants to cross reference to a paragraph numbered 'Section 1.1', but have the cross reference display only the 1.1, not the word 'Section.'

This can be done by modifying the way you insert your cross-reference. Follow these general steps:

  1. Position the insertion pointer where you want the cross-reference to appear.
  2. Choose Cross-reference from the Insert menu. Word displays the Cross-reference dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Cross-reference dialog box.

  4. Using the Reference Type drop-down list, choose Heading. (This assumes that your sections in your document are actually numbered headings.) Word displays a list of heading styles in the dialog box.
  5. Select the footnote you want used for this reference.
  6. Using the Insert Reference To drop-down list, choose Heading Number (no context).
  7. Click Insert. The cross-reference is inserted, and it includes only the number.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (6931) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Cross-referencing to an Automatic Number.

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Comments for this tip:

Ron    23 Sep 2016, 09:21
I just updated a contract with cross references and would also like to know if there is a way to make it update immediately automatically.
Em    17 May 2016, 23:15
Also looking to know how to set a cross-reference that updated immediately when source number is changed. Thanks!
Mark Dyer    02 Dec 2015, 16:34
This is the tip I have been seeking today.

I now have just one question:
After I create the cross-reference, is there any way to make the cross-reference update immediately after the source information is changed?

At this time, I must highlight the cross-reference field in the document and press F9 to force the update.

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