Microsoft Office 2016 for Seniors – The Program Interface with Word

Microsoft Office 2016 for Seniors

This is the first lesson in a series of free online computer classes for seniors where we are focusing on Microsoft’s latest version of Office, Microsoft Office 2016.  This free online computer training for seniors will focus on beginning computer classes for seniors  in Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook 2016.  ModernRetiree.com will be offering a variety of different computer lessons for seniors through-out the year.

A Look at the Word 2016 Interface

Microsoft Office 2016 is the latest version of Microsoft Office and is the version that will ship with your computer if your order a new one.  The latest version of Office is a very powerful Office Suite that consists of applications that perform a variety of different functions.  These applications allow you to:

  • Create letters, flyers, brochures and newsletters using Word
  • Create spreadsheets to manage your budget and account balances with Excel
  • Create presentations for your volunteer activities using PowerPoint
  • Send and receive email and manage your schedule with Outlook

Even though the Office applications are used for different functions, they all share a common interface so once you get familiar with one, you’ll find the other applications work in similar ways.  In this lesson, you’ll get familiar with the Office 2016 interface using Microsoft Word.  We’ll explore the Ribbon and the Backstage view and you’ll learn how to create new blank documents and get familiar with the Ribbon tabs.

Starting Word 2016

Office 2016 is compatible with Windows 7 or later and for Mac OS X 10.10 so the steps for starting your Office application will differ depending on which version you are using.  The most common way to start Word 2016 is to click the Start button at the lower left end of the Windows Taskbar.

Windows 7 – Click the Start Button on the taskbar and click on All Programs.  Click on Microsoft Office 2016 and click on Microsoft Word 2016.

Windows 10 – Click the Start button and click All Apps.  Scroll down to the M section and then click Microsoft Office 16. Click Word 2016 or desired application.

Windows 8.1 – From the Start screen, click the down arrow at the bottom and then locate and click Word 2016 or the application you want to use.

Starting a New Document

Once you open up Word, Excel or PowerPoint in Office 2016, you’ll be presented with a Start screen.  You can begin by working on a recent document, opening another document you saved earlier, create a new blank document or create a document from a template.  We’ll start by creating a new blank document in Word.

  1. Click on Blank Document and Word will open up.

Creating a new blank document in Word 2016

Maximize the Word Window

After you start Word 2016, you will see the Word application window. You may wish to maximize the window so you can view the full Word programming interface and all the tabs and groups on the ribbon The maximize button is located at the top right corner of the application window.

1. Click the maximize button to see the fully maximized window

minimize and maximize button in Word 2016

Word 2016 Program Interface

Here is the Word 2016 program working environment. We’ll look at all these parts of the program in detail in this lesson.

Word Interface in Office 2016

Working with the Word 2016 Program Window

The File Menu (Backstage View)

The Backstage view contains commands for managing your Word program and Files. It provides you options for creating new documents, saving, opening existing documents, printing, or sharing your document and sending your documents to others.

Enter the Backstage View

  1. Click the File Tab on the menu
  2. Click on the Info tab.  The middle pane provides options to control permissions for who can work on your document, share your document and allows you to manage versions.  The right pane displays document properties.  Explore the other tabs in the Backstage view.
  3. Click the arrow at the top of the window to exit backstage view

Backstage View in Word 2016

The Ribbon

Tools on the Ribbon are organized into groups including commands in the file tab for managing your files and commands on the ribbon for managing your file content. Each Office application has a different set of tabs for the tasks it  performs.  In the example below, we are looking at the Ribbon in Word 2016.  The Ribbon is what you will use to access all of Word’s features. It is located at the top of the document window and consists of Tabs that are organized into groups which contain common commands relating to a particular task.

There are 3 types of tabs

Standard – includes the File, Home, Insert, Page Layout Review, References, Mailings, View and Add-Ins

Contextual Tabs – these only appear when needed depending on the task you are performing such as Picture Tools, Drawing and Table Tools

Program Tabs – Print Preview, info, etc

Let’s take a look at the standard RIBBON tabs

Home Tab

  1. Click the Home tab, the ribbon will display command buttons you can use to change color, appearance, and alignment of your text.
  2. The Home Tab has 5 Groups – The Clipboard Group, the Font Group, the Paragraph Group, the Style Group and the Editing Group.

The Home tab in Word 2016

If you hover your mouse over a command, you’ll see a screen tip.  If a command is greyed out, it is not available for use.  In the following example, we’re hovering our mouse over the Paste command in the Clipboard Group.

screen tips in Word 2016

Insert Tab

  1. Click the Insert tab, and you will see the command buttons you will use whenever you want to insert tables, images, pictures, online pictures, charts, headers and footers and page numbers to your document.

Insert tab in Word 2016

Design Tab

  1. Click the Design tab, and you will see the command buttons you will use whenever you want to format your document and apply themes, styles, colors, fonts, paragraph spacing, effects and more.

Design tab in Word 2016

Layout Tab

1. Click the Layout tab, and you’ll find the buttons needed to adjust the margins, paper size, orientation, indentation, line spacing and general appearance of your document. The Layout Tab also allows you to change the Page Setup by launching the Page Setup Dialog Box.

2. Click the Page Setup Dialog box launcher.  Here you can change alignment, indentation and spacing before and after paragraphs.

Layout tab in Word 2016

Mailings Tab

1. Click the Mailings tab to see the commands related to mass mailings used in the Mail Merge Feature. Organized into 5 Groups: Create, Start Mail Merge, Write & Insert Fields, Preview Results and Finish.

Mailings tab in Word 2016

References Tab

1. Click the References tab. Here you’ll see commands you can add to your document such as reports and research papers. The commands are organized into 6 groups: Table of Contents, footnotes, Citations and Bibliography, Captions, Index and Table of Authorities

References tab in Word 2016

Review Tab

1. Click the Review tab and you’ll find buttons relating to proof reading your document, tracking changes, working in other languages and protecting documents. These are organized into 7 groups: Proofing, Language, Comments, Tracking Changes, Compare and Protect.

Review tab in Word 2016

View Tab

The view tab allows you to change the look and feel of your workspace and view your documents in different ways including Read Mode, Print layout, Web Layout, Outline and Draft mode.

1. Click the View Tab > View Group

View tab in Word 2016

Minimize or Maximize the Ribbon

The ribbon is big so you can choose whether you want to display it or not. To do this, there is a button located in the upper right hand corner of the ribbon.

1. Click the minimize the ribbon button. This will make the ribbon disappear when you are not using it. Click the same button again to make the ribbon redisplay.

Hide Ribbon in Word 2016

We will be using the different tabs, groups and commands on the Ribbon in later lessons in our series of free computer training for seniors.

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