How to Create and Use Sections in Microsoft Word

The Microsoft Word logo on a gray background

Inserting a Section Break in a Word document gives you a number of ways to split up large walls of text. This feature is useful not just for breaking up text by pages but also for multi-column layouts.

Insert a Section Break

Click anywhere on the page. This is where your new section will begin, so it’s a good idea to avoid breaking up words or sentences and instead look for opportunities to break the page at the end of a paragraph or at least a sentence.

Click empty space

Click the “Layout” tab on the ribbon at the top of the Word window.

layout tab

Click “Breaks” under “Page Setup” to open a new drop-down menu with multiple options for both Page and Section Breaks.

Breaks

Under “Section Breaks,” select the type of break you want to insert on the page. If you’re unsure, there’s a description of each below.

section breaks

  • Next Page: Breaks the text at the cursor. Anything to its right (or below it) will move to its own page.
  • Continuous: Starts a new section on the same page. This is often used on documents with multiple columns.
  • Even Page: Starts a new section at the next even-numbered page.
  • Odd Page: Starts a new section at the next odd-numbered page.

Delete a Section Break

To remove a section break from your Word document, first click the “Home” tab.

home tab

Click the “non-printing characters” icon. It looks a bit like a backwards “P.”

non-printing characters icon

Click the space to the left of the break you want to delete and then press the “Delete” key on the keyboard.

delete break

Change to a Different Type of Section Break

To change a section break to a different type of break, first find the Section Break you want to change and click just to the left of it.

click left of section break

Switch to the “Layout” tab on the ribbon.

layout tab

Click “Breaks” to open the “Page and Section Breaks” menu.

breaks

Choose the new type of section break you want by clicking on any of the options. It will automatically change the type of Section Break based on what you choose.

choose new section break

Your document will now be broken up into whatever type of sections you selected.


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