How to Copy/Paste Without Changing Format in Word: A Step-by-Step Guide

How to Copy/Paste Without Changing Format in Word

Copying and pasting text without changing the format in Microsoft Word can save you a lot of time and preserve the look of your document. To do this, you can use a simple keyboard shortcut. Highlight the text you want to copy, press Ctrl+C to copy it, and then when you go to paste it, use Ctrl+Shift+V. This will paste the text while keeping the original format intact.

Step-by-Step Guide to Copy/Paste Without Changing Format in Word

In this guide, we’ll walk you through the steps to copy and paste text in Microsoft Word without altering the format. Follow these steps to make sure your pasted text looks exactly like the original.

Step 1: Highlight the Text

First, highlight the text that you want to copy.

Make sure to select only the text you need. You can do this by clicking and dragging your mouse over the text or by holding down the Shift key while using the arrow keys.

Step 2: Copy the Text

Next, copy the highlighted text by pressing Ctrl+C.

This copies the text to your clipboard, making it ready to paste. You can also right-click on the highlighted text and select "Copy" from the context menu.

Step 3: Place the Cursor

Click to place the cursor where you want to paste the text in your Word document.

Ensure that the cursor is exactly where you want the pasted text. This will determine the placement of your text in the document.

Step 4: Paste Without Formatting

To paste the text without changing the format, press Ctrl+Shift+V.

This command will paste the text while keeping the original formatting intact. Alternatively, you can right-click where you placed the cursor, then select "Keep Source Formatting" from the paste options.

Step 5: Verify the Format

Finally, check to make sure the formatting has been preserved.

Look over the pasted text to ensure it matches the original formatting. If it doesn’t, you may need to redo the steps or adjust the formatting manually.

After you’ve completed these steps, the pasted text should retain its original formatting, blending seamlessly into your document.

Tips for Copy/Paste Without Changing Format in Word

  • Use Keyboard Shortcuts: Ctrl+C and Ctrl+Shift+V are your best friends for this task.
  • Right-Click Options: Right-clicking offers paste options like "Keep Source Formatting."
  • Clipboard Icon: After pasting, a clipboard icon might appear. Click it to change paste options.
  • Paste Special: Use "Paste Special" in the Edit menu for more formatting options.
  • Consistent Styles: Ensure both documents use the same styles for the best results.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if Ctrl+Shift+V doesn’t work?

Some versions of Word may require you to use Ctrl+Alt+V or use the "Paste Special" option from the Edit menu.

Can I change the default paste settings in Word?

Yes, you can go to Word Options > Advanced > Cut, Copy, and Paste to adjust default settings.

Why does the formatting sometimes still change?

It can happen if the styles in the source and destination documents are different. Make sure both documents use the same styles.

Is this method available in Word Online?

Word Online may not support all keyboard shortcuts. Use the right-click menu to select paste options.

Can I use this method for images and tables?

Yes, but the results can vary. It’s always good to check the pasted content to ensure it appears correctly.


  1. Highlight the text.
  2. Copy the text with Ctrl+C.
  3. Place the cursor where you want to paste.
  4. Paste without formatting using Ctrl+Shift+V.
  5. Verify the format.


Copying and pasting without changing the format in Word is a useful skill that can save you a lot of headaches. By following the steps outlined above, you can ensure that your documents look polished and professional. Whether you’re working on a school project, a work report, or simply organizing notes, maintaining consistent formatting is key to clear and effective communication.

Remember, the keyboard shortcuts Ctrl+C and Ctrl+Shift+V are simple yet powerful tools. They help maintain the look and feel of your text, ensuring that information is presented clearly and without unnecessary formatting issues. If you encounter any problems, refer to the tips and FAQs provided in this article.

For further reading, consider exploring Word’s Help section or looking up more advanced features like "Paste Special." Happy formatting!