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Have Word automatically align tables to changes in page layout

When you change margins or page orientation, by default, a Word table will not change its width to match. If you make one change, it may throw off the entire chart's position. Mary Ann Richardson shows how you can have Word automatically reposition it for you.

When you change margins or page orientation, by default, a table will not change its width to match. For example, you create a table whose width extends from the one-inch page margin on the left to the one-inch page margin on the right. If you change the margins to 1/2 inch, the table moves to the left. You may try to reposition it by clicking and dragging the table borders so they extend back to the right margin; you also may need to reformat each of the columns and their contents. Instead, have Word automatically reposition it for you.

Before making any changes to the page margins or orientation, follow these steps:

  1. Select the table and right-click it.
  2. Scroll to Autofit and then select AutoFit to Window.

Word will automatically adjust the table width to any margin or page orientation changes. With Autofit to Window enabled, you can use tables to keep header or footer text properly aligned. Thus, instead of using tab formatting, use a table set to Autofit to Window to automatically center or right-align the contents of a header or footer. For example, you could create a one-row, three-column table in a header. In the second column, you would type the chapter title and then center it in the cell. In the first cell in the third column, you would enter a right-aligned page number field. Unlike tab formatting, the header content in the table would automatically adjust to changes in the page margin or orientation.

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