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: Understanding DATE Field Formatting.

Understanding DATE Field Formatting

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 10, 2012)

When you insert a DATE field in Word, you can specify a format for how the date is displayed by using the \@ switch with the field. For instance, if you wanted to display the date as 18 September 2010, you would use the following syntax for the DATE field:

{ DATE \@ "d MMMM yyyy" }

You can easily change the format for the date by changing what is within the quote marks. The options are as follows:

Format Code Meaning
M Displays one or two digits for the month, as necessary.
MM Always displays two digits for the month.
MMM The three-letter abbreviation for the month.
MMMM The full name of the month.
d Displays one or two digits for the day of the month, as necessary.
dd Always displays two digits for the day of the month.
ddd The three-letter abbreviation for the day of the week.
dddd The full name of the day of the week.
yy Always displays two digits for the year.
yyyy Always displays four digits for the year.

Note that the letter M must be uppercase in all formats, but that the letters d and y can be upper or lower. Any other characters you use in the format string are displayed as entered.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1128) 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: Understanding DATE Field Formatting.

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

Entering a Page Break from the Keyboard

Need to force Word to move text to the top of the next page? It's easy when you use the keyboard shortcut for a page break.

Discover More

Placing Numbers Over Other Numbers

Sometimes you need to create text that isn't as "linear" as you might expect. For instance, you may need to put some text ...

Discover More

Automatic Font Color Won't Print Properly

Imagine that you go to print your document and all the text you can see on the screen just isn't there on the ...

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)

Tools to View Field Codes

Fields can be used to add all sorts of dynamic data to your documents. Viewing the field codes, at times, is desirable. ...

Discover More

Special Characters in Fields

If you try to add a quote mark or a backslash as part of a field parameter or switch, you may be surprised at what you ...

Discover More

Using the SYMBOL Field

The most common way of adding symbols to a document is to use the Symbol dialog box. There is another way, however, that can ...

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}] 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 4 - 2?

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.

Newest Tips
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.