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: Marking Gender-Specific Grammar.

Marking Gender-Specific Grammar

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated December 19, 2020)
This tip applies to Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


For certain types of writing it is not proper to use gender-specific words. For instance, the needs of your document may require you to use words such as police officer rather than policeman. If you want, you can have Word's grammar checker draw your attention to most gender-specific word uses. To enable this checking, follow these steps:

  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu. Word displays the Options dialog box.
  2. Make sure the Spelling & Grammar tab is selected. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Spelling & Grammar tab of the Options dialog box.

  4. Click on the Settings button. Word displays the Grammar Settings dialog box. (See Figure 2.)
  5. Figure 2. The Grammar Settings dialog box.

  6. Scroll through the Grammar and Style Options list until you find the Style – Gender-specific Words option. Make sure it is checked.
  7. Click on OK to close the Grammar Settings dialog box.
  8. Click on OK to close the Options dialog box.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (909) 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: Marking Gender-Specific Grammar.

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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