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: Word Counts for a Group of Documents.

Word Counts for a Group of Documents

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 22, 2020)

Lise is working with 50 small documents, many less than a page long. All are in separate files (no master or subdocuments). She'd like to know the total word count in all the files and wonders if there is an easy way to get the count.

One option is to use a third-party add-in that can calculate the word counts for you. Here are three suggestions you may want to check out:

WordCounter: http://www.editorium.com/counter.htm
FineCount: http://www.tilti.com/software-for-translators/finecount/
Total Assistant: http://www.surefiresoftware.com/totalassistant/

Of course, if you prefer to "roll your own" rather than to rely on somebody else's solution, you can create a relatively simple macro that will step through each file in a folder and calculate a total word count.

Sub GetWordCount()
    Dim docname As String
    Dim NumWords As Long
    Dim NumFiles As Integer
    Dim PathName As String

    PathName = "c:\mypath\"

    NumWords = 0
    docname = Dir(PathName & "*.doc*")
    While docname <> ""
        NumFiles = NumFiles + 1
        Documents.Open FileName:=PathName & docname, Visible:=False
        Documents(docname).Activate

        NumWords = NumWords + ActiveDocument.BuiltInDocumentProperties("Number of words").Value

        Documents(docname).Close savechanges:=False
        docname = Dir
    Wend

    MsgBox ("There are " & NumWords & " words in " & NumFiles & " documents.")
End Sub

To use the macro, make sure you change the PathName variable so that it reflects the path to the folder containing the documents you want to tally. (The path designation must end in a backslash.) When you run the macro, it displays the word count in a message box.

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 (13278) 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: Word Counts for a Group of Documents.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Changing Datasheet Column Width

To see information in a datasheet better, you may need to adjust column width.

Discover More

Changing Text in a Comment

Word has a very powerful find-and-replace capability, but it can be a bit persnickety when it comes to changing text ...

Discover More

Making Highlighting Disappear when Typing

Select a highlighted word or phrase and start typing, and Word maintains the highlighting on what you enter. If this ...

Discover More

Learning Made Easy! Quickly teach yourself how to format, publish, and share your content using Word 2013. With Step by Step, you set the pace, building and practicing the skills you need, just when you need them! Check out Microsoft Word 2013 Step by Step today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Creating a List of Cross-References

Cross-referencing has long been a capability in Word documents. You can easily add and remove cross-references but ...

Discover More

Creating a Master Document Using Existing Subdocuments

If you decide to create a master document, it is easy to do by just adding one or more subdocuments to an existing ...

Discover More

Generating a Count of Word Occurrences

Do you need to know the frequency with which certain words occur in your documents? There is no built-in way to derive ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 9 + 6?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.