How to print a section of a Word document

There's no obvious way to print the sections of a Word document, but you can still do it! Susan Harkins reveals the secret.

Word's print feature offers a lot of flexibility, but there's one trick that you might not know about. If you know a section's number, you can print that section. The key is to combine the section number with the character s in the form ssectionnumber.

Fortunately, there's an easy way to determine a section's number. Right-click the status bar and check Section, and Word will display the Section indicator in the status bar. That's the number you'll use when printing. (Word 2003's status bar displays this indicator by default.)

Once the Section indicator is enabled, position the insertion point in the section you want to print to update the indicator accordingly. Then, use that number in your print string as follows:

  1. Click the File tab and click Print in the left pane. In Word 2003, choose Print from the File menu.
  2. Choose Print Custom Range from the first setting's dropdown. In Word 2003, you don't have to choose anything; you'll enter the section code in the Pages option in the Print Range section.
  3. Then, preface the section name with the s character. For instance, to print section two, enter s2.
  4. Then, click Print. In Word 2003, click OK.

You can combine this section-printing code with page numbers. Just remember to separate the page numbers with comma characters. For example, to print page 1, section 2, and pages 10 through 12, you'd use the following string: 1, s2, 10-12.


Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.

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