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Ending a Page in Microsoft Word

written by: Matthew Becker•edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 12/20/2008

When editing your documents, the natural reaction to ending pages is to hit the Enter key long enough until the cursor lands on a new page. There is actually a far more effective way of ending and starting a new page, and that is with the Page Break function.

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    Don’t touch that (Enter) key!

    Use of the Page Break function is something that is either ignored, or just not well-known amongst many Word users. It is something that is actually really helpful, particularly if you are assembling multi-paged documents such as reports, essays, or even novels. Simply hitting the Enter key to bring yourself to a new page will require a lot of backtracking, especially once you start adding or subtracting lines of text from your document.

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    Inserting a Page Break

    Insert + Page Break Once you’re ready to end a page and start a new one, click on “Insert" at the top of the window. Then, on the left column, click the final option, which says “Page Break." Now your cursor has moved to the beginning of a new page. Type away and use this function again when you need to start another new page. A good shortcut to do this is to press Control + Enter. It’ll save you from clicking around to find the option.

    (Click on the image to view a larger version of it.)

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    Deleting a Page Break

    If you choose the option by accident, or you don’t want the new page to appear where you’ve selected it, all you have to do is use your backspace key twice to get back to where you were before you created your page break. It’s as simple as that.

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    Spread the Word (pun probably intended)

    If you’re thinking, “That’s it?" don’t feel ashamed or embarrassed. I was even surprised to learn that something like this had already existed in Microsoft Word. It’s not a best-kept secret or anything like that; it’s just a function that a lot of people don’t realize is actually there. Now that you’ve given it a try, be sure to tell others about it, too!

    Once you've given Page Breaks a try, give other page-related functions a whirl. You can insert a title page, which is great for essays and other forms of documents, or you can even insert a blank page so you don't have to use Page Break twice in a row. All of this is available under "Insert."