Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. 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: Moving Footnote Text into the Document.

Moving Footnote Text into the Document

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 24, 2021)

Footnotes are used quite often in some types of documents, such as scholarly papers or those where it is important to document supporting information. If you have a footnote whose text you want to move into the main body of the document—and thereby do away with the footnote—then you typically follow these steps:

  1. Select all the text in the footnote.
  2. Press Ctrl+X to cut the selected text to the Clipboard.
  3. Position the insertion pointer before the footnote reference.
  4. Press Ctrl+V to paste the text into the document.
  5. Delete the footnote reference, thereby removing the footnote.

Doing this once or twice is OK; doing it many times can be a pain. The solution to make the process faster is to use a macro. The following macro essentially automates the above steps:

Sub MoveFootnote()
    If Selection.Footnotes.Count = 1 Then
        Selection.Footnotes(1).Range.Copy
        Selection.Collapse direction:=wdCollapseStart
        Selection.Paste
        Selection.MoveRight Unit:=wdCharacter, Count:=1, Extend:=wdExtend
        Selection.Delete Unit:=wdCharacter, Count:=1
    End If
End Sub

In order to use the macro, select the footnote reference before you run it. The macro checks to make sure that there is a single footnote reference in the selection. If there is, it copies the footnote text, pastes it in front of the footnote reference, and then deletes the footnote reference. The result is that you move the footnote text into the document at the same point where the footnote reference used to be.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the WordTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (8930) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Moving Footnote Text into the 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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