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: Counting the Instances of a Text String.

Counting the Instances of a Text String

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated January 11, 2020)

When you are working in a large document, you may want to know how many times a particular text string occurs within a portion of the document. One way you can find this information is to create a macro that will examine a selected range of text to see how many instances it contains. Consider the following macro:

Sub CountString()
    Dim MyDoc As String, txt As String, t As String
    MyDoc = ActiveDocument.Range.Text
    txt = InputBox("Text to find")
    t = Replace(MyDoc, txt, "")
    MsgBox (Len(MyDoc) - Len(t)) / Len(txt) & " occurrences of " & txt
End Sub

Select the text you want analyzed and then run the macro. It assigns the selected text to the MyDoc variable (so nothing in the actual document is affected) and then asks you to enter the text string you want to find. The Replace function is then used to replace all the instances of that string within the MyDoc variable. The text, after the replacement, is assigned to the variable t. The length of the "before" text (MyDoc) and the "after" text (t) is compared and the number of replacements calculated.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the WordTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (3788) 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: Counting the Instances of a Text String.

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

Opening Multiple Recent Files at the Same Time

The MRU provides a handy list of files you have recently used. Opening multiple files from the MRU, however, is no easy task!

Discover More

Replacing Formatting Functions as a Toggle

Sarra is having a problem getting Find and Replace to behave properly when replacing italic-formatted text. This tip ...

Discover More

Word 2016 Styles and Templates (Table of Contents)

Styles are at the heart of Word's formatting power. Understanding how to use styles can greatly increase your ability to ...

Discover More

The First and Last Word on Word! Bestselling For Dummies author Dan Gookin puts his usual fun and friendly candor back to work to show you how to navigate Word 2013. Spend more time working and less time trying to figure it all out! Check out Word 2013 For Dummies today!

More WordTips (menu)

Highlighting Every Thousandth Character

Not satisfied with the detail provided by the Word Count feature in Word? Perhaps you want to actually know where every ...

Discover More

Controlling Repagination in Macros

Want to turn off document repagination while your macro does its work? Here are two approaches you can use.

Discover More

Setting the Right Indent of a Paragraph in a Macro

Need to format your document using a macro? You can easily set the right margin for an individual paragraph by using 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}] 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 1 + 1?

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.