Windows from the Keyboard Tips, Microsoft Word Manual Spell Check, September 23, 2020

Hello. This is Gerry Chevalier from the GTT Edmonton Chapter. This weekly blog provides tips that I find useful as a keyboard user of Windows. The information is for Windows10 and Office 365, although many tips still apply to older versions.  The tips do not require a screen reader unless specifically noted. Thus, the tips apply whether you are a keyboard user or low vision mouse user. Here is this week’s tip.

Microsoft Word – Manual Spell Check

The previous tip discussed the automatic spell check that Word can do as you type your document. However, you may manually want to spell check after you complete the document or perhaps spell check a document written by someone else.

With your Word document open, press F7 to start the spell checker. The spell check window will open, show the number of spell check issues, and place focus on the “Review all Results” button.

  • Press spacebar to activate this review button and you will be taken to the first issue. Word will show what it considers to be the issue, suggest a correction, and show the sentence containing the error. If you use JAWS, it will automatically speak that information for you. If you don’t use a screen reader there is also a button to have Word read the sentence containing the error to you.
  • If you agree with the suggested correction, just press Enter and Word will make the correction and move to the next issue.
  • Otherwise, you may TAB through the correction dialogue where you have multiple choices of actions you may take. There is a button to ignore the issue, ignore all occurrences of that issue in the document, or add the item to Word’s dictionary so it will not be flagged in the future. You may activate those buttons as needed and you will then be moved to the next issue in the document. You may also press Escape anytime to close the spell check window and return to your document.
  • Also, rather than pressing TAB to move through the dialogue controls, you may simply press a single shortcut letter. For example, press key I to ignore the issue, key G to ignore all issues, or key A to add the item to the dictionary. If you press I or G, the item is ignored, and you are moved to the next issue.
  • Thus, you can quickly move through all issues by simply pressing Enter to accept the correction, I to ignore it, or G to ignore all occurrences.
  • There is also a Settings button in the dialogue that you may activate to change how the spell checker behaves.

That’s it for this tip. Until next Wednesday, happy computing.