Sort text alphabetically in Word 2007


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I noticed one of my colleagues the other day struggling with her Excel Spreadsheet (yep that’s right, ed purchase even TNP needs a day job to pay the mortgage!). 

She had a sheet with a few hundred rows in it – all containing information about people who had registered to attend an event.  I noticed that she was trying to count how many people from each state had registered.

I popped over and suggested that she use a Pivot Table.

What is a Pivot Table?

A Pivot Table in Excel 2007 is a pretty powerful, implant yet simple way to slice and dice the data in your spreadsheet.  It can help you summarise hundreds, visit web thousands, even millions of rows (in Excel 2007 at least) into information that you can take action on!  And because you can quickly change how you view your data, it can be a really useful tool to use in the business world.

So how do you create a simple Pivot Table in Excel 2007? 

Well first, you need some data in your spreadsheet that you want to slice and dice.  Once you have the data – maybe it is a list of customers, a list of products, or a list of transactions including customers AND products… you can then start Pivoting!

  1. Make sure there are no blank rows or blank columns where all you data is in your spreadsheet (extra rows and columns after all your data is ok though)
  2. Click on the “Insert” tab in the ribbon
  3. Look for the “Tables” group. 
  4. The very first button in that group should be “Pivot Table”.  Click on that
  5. Select “Pivot Table”
  6. A little box will appear, and Excel 2007 will take an educated guess at what data you want to include in your pivot table.  Excel is generally pretty good and picking the data, so don’t worry about that part – but make sure you look at the bottom half of that box.  Excel is asking you where you want your pivot table to appear.  I suggest you choose a “New Worksheet” and then click “OK”
  7. You will now notice what looks like a “Task Pane” appear in the right hand side of your Excel window.
  8. In the top half of that task pane, select the fields that you want to include in your pivot table – basically you need to pick the information you want to slice and dice!
  9. In the bottom half of that task pane, play around with where those fields sit in the Pivot Table.  You can filter based on certain fields, you can add fields as row or column labels, or you can get summary values for the contents of cells – you take your pick.  It is best to play around and experiment at this stage to get the exact outcome you want, simply because there are so many ways you might want to slice and dice that data.
  10. When you are done, just close that task pan by clicking the “x” at the top of it (make sure you click the one at the top of the Task Pane, and not the one on the top of the window! that will close Excel!)
  11. Now play around with your pivot table, and impress your boss!

Whilst it might look a little complicated to begin with, the best advice I can give is to give Pivot Tables a go and simply experiment with some data.  Then you will see the true potential of how much time this great feature of Excel could save you!

’till next time!
TNP 😉

I noticed one of my colleagues the other day struggling with her Excel Spreadsheet (yep that’s right, purchase even TNP needs a day job to pay the mortgage!). 

She had a sheet with a few hundred rows in it – all containing information about people who had registered to attend an event.  I noticed that she was trying to count how many people from each state had registered.

I popped over and suggested that she use a Pivot Table.

What is a Pivot Table?

A Pivot Table in Excel 2007 is a pretty powerful, yet simple way to slice and dice the data in your spreadsheet.  It can help you summarise hundreds, thousands, even millions of rows (in Excel 2007 at least) into information that you can take action on!  And because you can quickly change how you view your data, it can be a really useful tool to use in the business world.

So how do you create a simple Pivot Table in Excel 2007? 

Well first, you need some data in your spreadsheet that you want to slice and dice.  Once you have the data – maybe it is a list of customers, a list of products, or a list of transactions including customers AND products… you can then start Pivoting!

  1. Make sure there are no blank rows or blank columns where all you data is in your spreadsheet (extra rows and columns after all your data is ok though)
  2. Click on the “Insert” tab in the ribbon
  3. Look for the “Tables” group. 
  4. The very first button in that group should be “Pivot Table”.  Click on that
  5. Select “Pivot Table”
  6. A little box will appear, and Excel 2007 will take an educated guess at what data you want to include in your pivot table.  Excel is generally pretty good and picking the data, so don’t worry about that part – but make sure you look at the bottom half of that box.  Excel is asking you where you want your pivot table to appear.  I suggest you choose a “New Worksheet” and then click “OK”
  7. You will now notice what looks like a “Task Pane” appear in the right hand side of your Excel window.
  8. In the top half of that task pane, select the fields that you want to include in your pivot table – basically you need to pick the information you want to slice and dice!
  9. In the bottom half of that task pane, play around with where those fields sit in the Pivot Table.  You can filter based on certain fields, you can add fields as row or column labels, or you can get summary values for the contents of cells – you take your pick.  It is best to play around and experiment at this stage to get the exact outcome you want, simply because there are so many ways you might want to slice and dice that data.
  10. When you are done, just close that task pan by clicking the “x” at the top of it (make sure you click the one at the top of the Task Pane, and not the one on the top of the window! that will close Excel!)
  11. Now play around with your pivot table, and impress your boss!

Whilst it might look a little complicated to begin with, the best advice I can give is to give Pivot Tables a go and simply experiment with some data.  Then you will see the true potential of how much time this great feature of Excel could save you!

’till next time!
TNP 😉

Say you have a nice long list of names.  But they are just all over the place.  Wouldn’t it be good to be able to sort them into alphabetical order?

Well in Word 2007 it is a piece of cake!  Assuming you have each item in your list on a separate line…

  1. Select the text you want to sort alphabetically
  2. Make sure you are on the “Home” tab in the Ribbon
  3. Look for the “Paragraph” group
  4. Click on the sort button (that is the one with an "A on top of a Z”
  5. A box will appear – if you want straight alphabetical order on your paragraphs just hit ok.
  6. If you want reverse alphabetical order, surgery
    make sure you select “Descending”

Using the sort button you can also sort numerically, order
or by date!  Simply change the “Type” of sort you want to do in the “Sort Text” box.

‘till next time!
TNP 😉

13 thoughts on “Sort text alphabetically in Word 2007

  1. Thx a lot there are people like you who save us the time of reading the incomprehensible “Word Help”!

  2. Is there an upper limit to the number of paragraphs that can be sorted? I have a single column, 300 page list of paragraphs that I need to sort alphabetically, but the Word sort function refuses to co-operate.

  3. Thank you so much for the help, it’ll really help with my IT Coursework!! Makes life so much simpler!!

  4. Thanks so much for the info on sorting in Word 2007. I’ll be keeping your website as a favourite.

  5. Good-Morning,

    Trying to sort names for a candle light service in 2007 word document. Followed your steps, still unable to sort by last names. Typed each name on a separate line, selected all names. Results, sort is by first name. Type names as: John Doe, etc.

    Kelp! Need info A.S.A.P.!

    Thank You!

  6. I have a list of names and numbers that I need to sort the first field numberically and a second field alphabetitly. I don’t have the option of sorting alphabeticly in field 2.

  7. B.J. Robinson, Word will only sort on the first character(s) in your list. Word will not distinguish between first names and last names as in the example you mentioned. If you want to do so, you will have to re-order the individual lines such that the last names come first on each line.

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