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: Moving the Insertion Point in a Macro.

Moving the Insertion Point in a Macro

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 13, 2015)

VBA allows you to use commands to move the insertion point up, down, left, and right within your document. You do this by using the MoveUp, MoveDown, MoveLeft, and MoveRight methods. You must then specify the type of units you want to move, as well as how many. The basic syntax is as follows:

Selection.direction Unit:=units, Count:=num, Extend:=extension

where direction is one of the methods (MoveUp, MoveDown, MoveLeft, or MoveRight). If you are using the MoveUp or MoveDown methods, you can use units of wdLine, wdParagraph, wdWindow, or wdScreen. If you are using the MoveLeft or MoveRight methods, you can use units of wdCharacter, wdWord, or wdSentence. The num setting indicates how many of the units you want to move the insertion point. The extension value is either wdMove (if you only want to move the insertion point) or wdExtend (if you want to enlarge the selection by your movement).

As an example, let's say you want to move the insertion point to the right by five characters. The proper command to do this would be the following:

Selection.MoveRight Unit:=wdCharacter, Count:=5, Extend:=wdMove

If you instead want to move the insertion point up two paragraphs, and select the text from the current insertion point location to the new one, you would use the following line:

Selection.MoveUp Unit:=wdParagraph, Count:=2, Extend:=wdExtend

You can similarly construct other movement commands for your macro.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (784) 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: Moving the Insertion Point in a Macro.

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. ...

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