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: Brackets around Footnote References.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 25, 2016)
Ayman created a document that has numerous footnotes in it. He would like the footnote references to have square brackets surrounding the numbers and wonders if there is a way to do this automatically.
The short answer is no, there is no way to add brackets around footnote references automatically. You can, however, add them by using Find and Replace. Simply follow these general steps:
Figure 1. The Replace tab of the Find and Replace dialog box.
That's it. Word searches for all footnote references in both the main body of the document and in the footnote area. It then replaces them with brackets containing whatever was found in the search.
There is one caveat to this approach: You should do it only once, probably after you are done inserting footnotes in your document. If you do it more than once you will end up with multiple nested brackets, which could be a mess to try to clean up.
WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (9253) 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: Brackets around Footnote References.
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