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Common reading tools are built in right into Word: page through a document, add comments, define and translate words, and copy or highlight text, as well as other convenient reading tools. You can turn full screen mode on or off in the ribbon.

If you’re reading a document, not writing or major editing, click or tap View > Read Mode to hide the writing tools and menus and to leave more room for the pages themselves. Read Mode automatically fits the page layout to your device, using columns and larger font sizes, both of which you can adjust.

Read mode in Word

To get out of Read Mode, click or tap View > Edit Document.

In addition to the reading controls you use regularly, you can zoom in and out on images and other objects, expand or collapse sections, or watch embedded videos. Adjust columns, page color, and layout. Open the Navigation Pane to quickly move around in the document.

Image of portion of View menu in Read Mode, with Edit Document option selected.


Click View > Read Mode to switch to the Read Mode layout.

Click or tap the arrows on the edges of the screen to turn the page.

Image showing right turn page arrow in Read Mode

  • Double-click or double-tap to zoom in and make tables, charts, and images in your document fill the screen.

  • Click or tap away from the object to zoom back out and continue reading.

  • If there are comments in the document, you’ll see a comment hint in the margin. Click it to read that comment. To see all of the comments, click View > Show Comments.

  • To add your own comments, select the content you want to comment about and right-click it, then click New Comment, and type in the comment balloon that appears.

    Tip: Other options on the View list open the Navigation Pane, change the column width or background color, and switch from columns to a conventional layout.

Image of View menu in Read Mode with the Navigation Pane option selected.

Select and right-click the text you want to copy, and click Copy.

Right-click the text you want to translate or define, click Translate or Smart Lookup.

Select and right-click the text, click Highlight, and click the color you want.

Collapse or expand parts of a document with just a click or a tap. The expand/collapse arrow appears when you pause next to a heading. (If you’re using a touch device, they’re always visible.)

Image showing expand-and-collapse control arrow next to heading in Read Mode.

Reopen a document and keep reading right where you left off. Word remembers where you were, even when you reopen an online document from a different computer.

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