Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 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: Getting Rid of Fields Inserted by Third-Party Programs.

Getting Rid of Fields Inserted by Third-Party Programs

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 31, 2020)

3

Carole works at a company where the authors sometimes use automatic bibliographical programs (such as one called 'Endnote') to format and link their reference list to their textual citations. The software inserts fields in the Word document that are linked to the reference list. The problem is that the document is then difficult to edit or correct, and Carole is looking for a way to change the fields to text. She's tried selecting a field and pressing Ctrl+Shift+F9, but this does not seem to work on the fields inserted by the bibliographical program.

It's hard to tell, exactly, what the bibliographical program is really inserting in the document. The best bet might be to contact the program's publisher and ask their technical support team how to do the conversion. (Surely, they've had this question before about their program?)

One thing you can try is to follow these steps:

  1. Highlight the field. (Make sure the entire field is selected, and not just part of the field.)
  2. Press Ctrl+C to copy the field to the Clipboard.
  3. With the field still selected, click the down-arrow under the Paste tool on the Home tab of the ribbon and then choose Paste Special. Word displays the Paste Special dialog box.
  4. Make sure the Text Only radio button is selected.
  5. Click OK.

With normal fields, the above actions replace the field with the text displayed by the field. If it does not work with your particular situation, it may mean that you are not really working with fields; the third-party program is inserting something other than a field into your document. Your only recourse at that point is to rely on whatever information you may find from the technical support folks at the program's publisher.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10419) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Getting Rid of Fields Inserted by Third-Party Programs.

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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Comments

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What is 4 + 8?

2018-11-09 11:14:42

Malcolm Patterson

I don't understand. Why should the insertion of fields make editing or correction difficult? I would expect the opposite. Once they are "frozen" into text, document changes become a nightmare.


2018-11-09 11:11:16

Jennifer Thomas

When the 'fields' are not converted with Word tools, I use Browse by Object for Graphics as a quick way to find & delete the non-converted elements -or- I round-trip the document to PDF, if it's less work to put back the fields I want than to find the 'fields' I don't. Tip: If a normal round-trip isn't enough, use PDF/A for a 'kill everything but text' solution if needed; it's a few extra steps to get it back to Word, but worth it.


2018-11-09 06:20:59

Ethan Hack

With EndNote, conversion of references to normal text is straightforward if you can obtain the EndNote program and its add-in for Word.


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