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: Editing a Template.

Editing a Template

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated May 20, 2023)
This tip applies to Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


A template is Word's guide for how your document and working environment should appear. Templates contain information on the toolbar, menus, macros, styles, default text, and any number of other environmental items. Editing a template is much like editing a regular document; the only difference is that the file is saved with a DOT filename extension (instead of DOC).

To load an existing template so you can edit it, do the following:

  1. Choose Open from the File menu, or click on the Open tool on the toolbar. You will see the Open dialog box.
  2. In the Files of Type pull-down list, select Document Template (*.dot). The filename display will be changed to show only template files.
  3. Select the template file you want to edit.
  4. Click on OK.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (467) 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: Editing a Template.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Margins Incorrect when Printing

Endnotes are easy enough to add and accumulate in a document. For this reason, Word makes it easy to jump from one ...

Discover More

Using Revision Tracking

Want to keep track of the changes other people make to your workbook or even your own changes? Excel makes gathering this ...

Discover More

Incorrect In-Use Message

If you try to open a workbook that someone else has open, Excel lets you know of the conflict. What if Excel tells you, ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More WordTips (menu)

Determining the Template Attached to a Document

If you've opened a document in Word, that document has a template attached to it. This tip looks at what those templates ...

Discover More

Getting Rid of Persistent Templates

Word uses an open interface that allows add-ons and other programs to expand the way that Word works. Sometimes remnants ...

Discover More

What Changes Did I Make In that Template?

When you make changes that affect a template, Word usually asks you if you want to save those changes when you exit the ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is nine minus 3?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Videos
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.