Getting Rid of All TA Fields

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 5, 2020)


When creating and generating a table of authorities, Lindsay finds it difficult to add new codes to a document that already has codes in it. She wonders if there is a way—perhaps through a macro—that will strip out all the "TA" field codes in a document so she can start from scratch.

First, a quick note about the table of authorities feature in Word: Like other special tables, a TOA (Table of Authorities) is implemented through the use of fields. In specifying what should be included in the TOA, you go through your document and "mark" items you want included. (How you mark items is covered in other WordTips.) The marking process actually causes Word to add hidden fields to your document. It is these fields that indicate what should be included in the TOA when it is compiled by Word.

Getting rid of the hidden TOA fields is actually quite easy to do and (surprise!) doesn't require the use of a macro. In fact, you can use a regular Find and Replace operation to get rid of all the fields. The fields you want to search for are actually TA fields—that is the code within the fields. Simply follow these steps:

  1. Display the Home tab of the ribbon.
  2. In the Paragraph group, click the Show/Hide tool so that hidden text is displayed. (This step is critical, as it displays hidden text, including the TA fields which are normally hidden.)
  3. Press Ctrl+H. Word displays the Replace tab of the Find and Replace dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Replace tab of the Find and Replace dialog box.

  5. In the Find What box, enter "^19 TA" (without the quote marks). This tells Word you want to find a field code (^19) followed by a space and then the letters TA.
  6. Make sure the Replace With box is empty.
  7. Click Replace All.

That's it! All of the TA fields in the document are removed, but other fields (if any) are left intact. You can hide your hidden text again, if wanted, and go through the process of again marking the TOA citations in the document.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (13359) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365.

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 six minus 1?

2019-10-03 11:11:00

kokobe Seyoum

You changed my day. May the almighty God bless you and your work

2015-01-28 10:14:38

Jessica Letteney

If you do not see field codes when you select the Show/Hide, tool, go to File/Options/Advanced/Show document contents and check the box next to Show field codes instead of their values. But then you will have to uncheck the box after you've done the Find/Replace routine.

2015-01-24 12:25:11

George Arnold

Thank you for the TA tip.

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