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Document Views in Word

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Document Views in Word: Video Lesson

            This video lesson, titled “Word for Microsoft 365 Tutorial: How to Use the Document View Buttons,” shows you how to change document views in Word. This video lesson is from our complete Word tutorial, titled Mastering Word Made Easy.


            You can easily switch document views in Word. The document view buttons in Word are a group of buttons for commonly used document views, which appear in the lower-right corner of the application. Separately, buttons for all the document views in Word also appear on the “View” tab of the Ribbon in the “Views” button group and “Immersive” button group. You can click these buttons in either location to change the current document’s view.

Print Layout View:

            By default, Word opens in “Print Layout” view, which you use to create standard documents. Unless otherwise specified by a lesson, you can assume the document view referenced by this tutorial’s lessons refers to the “Print Layout” view. This view lets you see the document as it will look if printed. This view shows margins, page breaks, and header and footer data.

Document View Button Locations:

            However, you can switch between the different document views, as needed. Each has its own use in the program. Within the “View” tab in the Ribbon, the “Views” button group contains buttons for the “Read Mode,” “Print Layout,” “Web Layout,” “Outline,” and “Draft” views. The “Immersive” button group contains buttons for the “Focus Mode” and “Immersive Reader” views. In the Status Bar, there are buttons for the “Focus Mode,” “Read Mode,” “Print Layout,” and “Web Layout” document views.

            Select the view that works best for the document to create. For example, if you use Microsoft Word to create a blog post, you may want to view it in the “Web Layout” view. Since we have already discussed the function of the “Print Layout” view, let’s review the purpose of the other document views in Word.

A picture showing the locations of the buttons in the Ribbon and the Status Bar that you use to change document views in Word.

Read Mode, Web Layout, Outline, and Draft View:

            The “Read Mode” document view maximizes the space available for reading a document. It’s useful for electronically reading and reviewing a document. The “Web Layout” document view helps if creating documents for online publishing. The “Outline” view helps you organize a hierarchy of ideas in a master document, like an outline or agenda. The “Draft” view focuses on the body of text that makes up most documents. This view hides additional information, like the margins or header and footer data.

Focus Mode:

            The “Focus Mode” hides all distractions from the document area for the currently selected document view. You can roll your mouse pointer and hold it at the top of the screen to show the Ribbon and Status Bar, if needed. Then roll back into or click into the document to hide them again. After showing the Ribbon and Status Bar again, simply click the “Focus Mode” button again in either location to turn this document view mode off.

Immersive Reader:

            The “Immersive Reader” view is like a modified version of the “Draft” view, which lets you focus on the current document’s text. When using this view, a special “Immersive Reader” contextual tab also appears in the Ribbon. You can use the buttons in the “Immersive Reader” button group on the “Immersive Reader” contextual tab of the Ribbon to adjust the “Column Width,” “Page Color,” “Line Focus,” “Text Spacing,” show the “Syllables,” or “Read Aloud” the document’s text. To exit “Immersive Reader” view in Word, click the “Close Immersive Reader” button in the “Close” button group on this same contextual tab.