Create forms that users complete or print in Word

You can create a form in Word by starting with a template or a new blank document and adding content controls, including check boxes, text boxes, and combo boxes. Other people can use Word to fill out the form and then print it if they choose to.

In a text box, users can enter text. In a combo box, users can select from a list of choices that you provide or they can enter their own information.

Do any of the following:

Step 1: Show the Developer tab

  1. On the right side of the ribbon, click Action pop-up menu , and then click Ribbon Preferences.

  2. Under Customize, select the Developer check box.

Step 2: Open a template or a document on which to base the form

You can start with a blank document and create your own form. Or, to save time, you can start with a form template.

  1. On the File menu, click New from Template.

  2. In the left pane, expand Online Templates, and then click Forms.

  3. Double-click the form template that you want to use.

Step 3: Add content controls to the form

  1. In the document, click where you want to add the control.

  2. On the Developer tab, under Form Controls, click Text Box, Check Box, or Combo Box.

  3. To set specific properties for the control, click Options, and then configure the properties that you want.

    Note: To create a list of drop-down items in a combo box, select the combo box placeholder, click Options, and then add the items that you want to appear in the drop-down list.

  4. Repeat steps 1 through 3 for each control that you want to add.

Step 4: Add instructional text (optional)

Instructional text (for example, "Type First Name") in a text box can make your form easier to use. By default, no text appears in a text box, but you can add it.

  1. Click the text box control that you want to add instructional text to.

  2. On the Developer tab, under Form Controls, click Options.

  3. In the Default Text box, type the instructional text.

  4. Make sure that the Fill-in enabled check box is selected, and then click OK.

Step 5: Protect the form

  1. On the Developer tab, under Form Controls, click Protect Form.

    Note: To unprotect the form and continue editing, click Protect Form again.

  2. Save and close the form.

Step 6: Test the form (optional)

If you want, you can test the form before you distribute it.

  1. Protect the form.

  2. Reopen the form, fill it out as the user would, and then save a copy.

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