Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Determining the Number of Paragraphs in a Document.

Determining the Number of Paragraphs in a Document

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 7, 2016)


Macros are often used for processing an entire document. It is not unusual to have a macro step through all the paragraphs in a document and make changes based on the information in the paragraph. If you need to step through all the paragraphs in a document, it is helpful to find out how many paragraphs there are. The way you do that in a VBA macro is through the use of the Count property with the Paragraphs collection, as follows:

iParCount = ActiveDocument.Paragraphs.Count

The Paragraphs collection contains all of the paragraphs in the document, each in its own object. The Count property simply returns a value indicating how many objects (paragraphs) are in the collection. In the above example, this value is assigned to the iParCount variable. You can then use this count in doing any processing you need to.

Remember, as well, that paragraphs can be "empty" in Word. If someone types some information and then presses the Enter key twice, they have just created an empty paragraph with that second press of Enter. This increases the paragraph count, so it is a good idea to display non-printing characters in a document if you are trying to figure out how VBA derived the paragraph count that it did. The rule is that each press of Enter results in a new document paragraph.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (5679) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Determining the Number of Paragraphs in a Document.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...


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What is six more than 8?

2016-11-07 21:27:39


Paul has an "easier method", which is also a significantly different method. It gives a count different than what

"The rule is that each press of Enter results in a new document paragraph."

would indicate. Paul's method seems to ignore empty paragraphs. I think it is a more meaningful result.


2015-01-31 20:29:20


I use an easier way to count the number of paragraphs. I select all the text in the document and click the Word Count button in the status bar. The number of paragraphs along with other stats pop up.

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