Create a Form in Word 2010


This article will tell you how you can create an effective form in Word 2010.

Helpful tips for creating an effective form.

Here are some important tips on how to create an effective form:

  1. Keep it short and simple.
  2. Only use what you need.
  3. Be the first to communicate by using friendly wording in your form.
  4. Include clear and helpful error messages.
  5. Let the user know that they have completed the form by saying something along the lines of "Thank you for your sumbission! You'll be hearing from us soon."

What is the difference between designing a form to be filled out online and a form to be printed?

You can create a form in Microsoft Word by starting with a template and adding content controls, including check boxes, text boxes, date pickers, and drop-down lists. Other people can use Word to fill out the form on their computer. In an advanced scenario, any content controls that you add to a form can also be linked to data.

You can also create a form by starting with a template. Many form templates are available on the Web site.

Note: You can print a form that was created by using content controls, but the boxes around the content controls will not be printed.

For more information about online forms and forms to be printed see: Create forms that users complete or print in Word

Creating a drop-down list in an online form

In a combo box, users can select from a list of choices that you provide or they can type in their own information. In a drop-down list, users can only select from the list of choices.
  1. On the Developer tab, in the Controls group, click the Combo Box Content ControlButton image or Drop-Down List Content ControlButton image .
  2. Select the content control, and then on the Developer tab, in the Controls group, click Properties.

  3. To create a list of choices, click Add under Drop-Down List Properties.
  4. Type a choice in the Display Name box, such as Yes, No, or Maybe.

    Repeat this step until all of the choices are in the drop-down list.
  5. Fill in any other properties that you want.Note If you select the Contents cannot
    Note If you select the Contents cannot be edited check box, users won’t be able to click a choice.

For more information see Create forms that users complete or print in Word

Using Content Controls to create better forms

What are Content Controls?

Content controls provide a UI that is optimized for both user input and print. When you add a content control to a document, the control is identified by a border, a title, and temporary text that can provide instructions to the user. The border and the title of the control do not appear in printed versions of the document.

For example, if you want the user to enter a date in a section of your document, you can add a date picker content control to the document. When users click the control, the standard date picker UI appears. You can also set properties of the control to set the regional calendar that is displayed and to specify the date format. After the user chooses a date, the UI of the control is hidden, and only the date appears if the user prints the document.

Content controls also help you do the following:
  • Prevent users from editing or deleting parts of a document. This is useful if you have information in a document or template that users should be able to read but not edit, or if you want users to be able to edit content controls but not delete them.
  • Bind parts of a document or template to data. You can bind content controls to database fields, managed objects in the .NET Framework, XML elements that are stored in the document, and other data sources.
Too learn what the different Content Controls are see Step 3 of this article:
Create forms that users complete or print in Word

You can also get help from the Microsoft Community online community, search for more information on Microsoft Support or Windows Help and How To, or learn more about Assisted Support options.

Article ID: 2724457 - Last Review: 3 Oct 2012 - Revision: 1