How to Check Word Count in Microsoft Word

Whether you’ve written yourself a daily writing goal, are cramming word count for a final essay, or are just curious how long your novel is so far, calculating how many words you have written is a fairly common task. There are many ways to get an accurate word count including counting each word by hand, using an online word counter tool, or the easiest way of all…right in your word processor! That’s right, Microsoft Word (and Google Docs) have built-in word counters. Today we’ll walk you through how to use Microsoft Word’s word count tool.

Count Words as You Type in Microsoft Word

The simplest way to use the word counter in Microsoft Word is to just type your text and then look at the bottom left corner. Next to the page count, you should see your word count as you can see in the screenshot below:

Microsoft Word - word counter

If you’re unable to see the word count, you may need to right-click on the bottom left bar and select it:

Microsoft Word - word counter selection

If you want more details about your document, such as character or paragraph counts,Β  you can click on the word count and a new pop-up will display with these details:

Microsoft Word - word counter details


Getting Word Count Through the Ribbon

Another way you can get word count is through the Microsoft Office ribbon at the top of Microsoft Word. If you click on the “Review” tab, you’ll see “Word Count” right next to “Spelling & Grammar” and “Thesaurus.” This will open the same details pop-up as above.

Microsoft Word - word counter ribbon

Microsoft Word - word counter details

Count Words in a Selection

If you only want the amount of words in a certain selection of text, you can simply highlight that text and the word counter at the bottom will update to show only the word count in that selection:

Microsoft Word - word counter selection of text

Additionally, the details pop-up will also show the new selection data:

Microsoft Word - word counter selection of text details



Hopefully, this guide gave you a quick overview of how to do a word count in Word. If you won’t feel like copying your text into Word everytime you want to count the number of words, you can always use an online tool. We have a word counter tool and we’ve also built simple word counting into our title capitalization tool.

This post was proofread by Grammarly. Try it - it's FREE!

Capitalize My Title is a dynamic title capitalization tool used to make sure your titles or headlines use proper capitalization rules according to various style guides include APA, AP, MLA, and Chicago. It also counts your words and checks for grammar issues.


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