How to Make Columns in Word: A Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners

how to make columns in word

Creating columns in Microsoft Word can add a professional look to your documents, whether you’re working on a newsletter, a brochure, or a report. You can easily divide your text into columns by following a few simple steps. This guide will walk you through the process, ensuring your text flows neatly and is visually appealing.

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Make Columns in Word

In the following steps, you’ll learn how to create columns in a Word document. By the end, you’ll be able to split your text into two or more columns seamlessly.

Step 1: Open Your Document

Make sure you have the document you want to edit open in Microsoft Word.

If you don’t already have a document open, you’ll need to create a new one by going to File > New. Once your document is open, you’ll be able to start formatting.

Step 2: Highlight the Text

Select the text that you want to format into columns by clicking and dragging your mouse over the text.

If you want the entire document to be in columns, you can either press Ctrl+A to select all the text or skip this step and apply the columns to the whole document later.

Step 3: Go to the Layout Tab

Click on the Layout tab at the top of the screen.

The Layout tab contains all the tools you need to format your document, including the option to create columns.

Step 4: Select Columns

Click on the Columns button in the Page Setup group.

A dropdown menu will appear, giving you several options like one, two, three columns, and more.

Step 5: Choose the Number of Columns

Select the number of columns you want from the dropdown menu.

If the predefined options don’t meet your needs, you can click on "More Columns" to customize the number of columns, width, and spacing.

Step 6: Apply Your Changes

Click OK to apply the changes and see your text formatted into columns.

Your selected text will now be organized into the number of columns you chose. You can always go back and adjust if needed.

After completing these steps, your text will be divided into neat, evenly spaced columns, making your document look more like a professional publication.

Tips for How to Make Columns in Word

  • Use Columns for Readability: Columns can make long texts easier to read, especially in newsletters and brochures.
  • Balance Columns: Ensure your columns are balanced so one doesn’t appear longer than the other. Go to Layout > Columns > More Columns and check the box labeled "Equal column width."
  • Add Line Between Columns: For a clearer distinction between columns, you can add a line by selecting Layout > Columns > More Columns and checking "Line between."
  • Adjust Column Width and Spacing: Customize the width and spacing of columns for better layout control. Go to Layout > Columns > More Columns for these options.
  • Preview Your Layout: Always preview your document to see how the columns look. This can be done by going to File > Print or simply scrolling through your document.

Frequently Asked Questions on How to Make Columns in Word

How do I remove columns from my Word document?

To remove columns, go to the Layout tab, click on Columns, and select "One" from the dropdown. This will revert your document to a single-column format.

Can I create columns in only part of my document?

Yes, highlight the specific text you want to format into columns before following the steps above. This will apply columns only to the selected text.

How can I adjust the space between columns?

Go to Layout > Columns > More Columns. Here, you can adjust the spacing by changing the values in the "Spacing" box.

Can I add a different number of columns on different pages?

Yes, by inserting section breaks before and after the text where you want the columns. This can be done via Layout > Breaks > Section Breaks.

What if my columns aren’t balancing correctly?

Ensure you’ve selected "Equal column width" in the More Columns dialog box. You may also need to manually adjust your text to balance it across columns.


  1. Open your document.
  2. Highlight the text.
  3. Go to the Layout tab.
  4. Select Columns.
  5. Choose the number of columns.
  6. Apply your changes.


Making columns in Word is a straightforward process that can significantly enhance the readability and professional appearance of your documents. Whether you’re crafting a newsletter, a brochure, or a detailed report, knowing how to utilize columns effectively can transform a standard document into an engaging piece of written work.

Remember, practice makes perfect. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different column settings to find what works best for your specific document. Once you get the hang of it, creating columns will become second nature.

For further reading, check out Microsoft’s official documentation or other online tutorials. Happy formatting!