Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021. 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: Distributing Columns Evenly.

Distributing Columns Evenly

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated May 13, 2023)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021


When it is time to format a table, you may find that your overall table width is set the way you want it, but the columns within the table are not "just right." For instance, you may want the columns to be the same width as each other without disturbing the overall width of the table. Here's how you can make the formatting change:

  1. Position the insertion point within the table you want to modify.
  2. Display the Layout tab of the ribbon. (This tab is available only after completing step 1.)
  3. Click the Distribute Columns tool in the Cell Size group.

Word dutifully adjusts individual column widths without affecting the overall width of your table.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (5976) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Distributing Columns Evenly.

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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