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: Changing Measurement Units.

Changing Measurement Units

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated November 27, 2021)
This tip applies to Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


Word allows you to modify your work environment extensively. One of the changes you can make involves the default units of measurement used in dialog boxes and on the ruler. By default, Word uses inches, but you can customize the program so it will use centimeters, picas, points, or millimeters.

To change the default measurement units, follow these steps:

  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu. Word displays the Options dialog box.
  2. Click on the General tab. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The General tab of the Options dialog box.

  4. In the Measurement Units pull-down list, select the units of measurement you want used by default.
  5. 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 (1157) 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: Changing Measurement Units.

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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