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: Transposing Two Characters.

Transposing Two Characters

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 23, 2015)


I generally call myself "fumble fingers" when I do it, but it happens nonetheless. I'm typing along, and all of a sudden I notice that I have transposed two characters in a word. For instance, I type form instead of from. Unfortunately, AutoCorrect can't be programmed to correct my mistake, since both form and from are valid words.

If you find yourself doing this, the following macro will be of interest. It can be used to provide a command left out of Word—that of transposing two characters. All you need to do is position the insertion point between two characters you want to transpose and then issue the macro.

Sub TransposeCharacters()
    With Selection
        .MoveLeft Unit:=wdCharacter, Count:=1, Extend:=wdExtend
        .MoveRight Unit:=wdCharacter, Count:=1
        .MoveLeft Unit:=wdCharacter, Count:=1
    End With
End Sub

This macro is made more valuable if you assign it to a keyboard shortcut, as described in other issues of WordTips. Once this is done, you can fumble your fingers all you want, and then transpose the characters without ever removing your fingers from the keyboard.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10606) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Transposing Two Characters.

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 5 + 9?

2016-10-21 10:03:54


For transposing character macro, inserted macro with hotkey cntrl+T. When I attempt to run this macro, I receive:

runtime error 4608
Value out of range

2015-05-25 17:12:26

Ed Tuggy

Allen, I like this tip, and may implement it. Meanwhile, it reminds me of a more general case that I wish was available in Word, if not in all programs. As far as I know, it isn't. What I wish for is the ability to make two selections and tell them to swap places. Then you could swap characters, words, phrases, you name it. Maybe somebody has some idea how to do this. I write macros for Word pretty regularly, but haven't yet noticed a way to do this. But now I'm starting to think again...

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