How to Red Line in Word: A Step-by-Step Guide

Redlining in Word may seem like a technical task, but it’s actually quite simple. It’s a feature that allows you to track changes made to a document. This is especially useful when you’re working with others and need to see who made what changes. By following a few easy steps, you can turn on redlining and start tracking changes in your Word documents.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Redline in Word

Before we dive into the steps, let’s clarify what we’re about to do. Redlining, also known as ‘track changes’, is a way to show edits made to a document. When you turn on this feature, Word will highlight any additions, deletions, or formatting changes with a red line or other colored marks.

Step 1: Open your document

Open the Word document you want to edit.

Opening your document is the first and most obvious step. Make sure you have the document you want to work with open and active in Word.

Step 2: Go to the Review tab

Click on the ‘Review’ tab at the top of your Word window.

The Review tab is where all the magic happens for redlining. This is where you’ll find all the tools you need for reviewing and tracking changes.

Step 3: Click on ‘Track Changes’

In the ‘Tracking’ group, click on the ‘Track Changes’ button.

When you click on ‘Track Changes’, Word starts tracking any modifications made to the document. All changes will be highlighted, making them easy to spot.

Step 4: Make your changes

Start editing your document as you normally would.

As you make changes, you’ll notice that they’re marked with red lines or other colored highlights. This makes it easy to see what changes have been made at a glance.

Step 5: Review the changes

Use the ‘Previous’ and ‘Next’ buttons in the ‘Changes’ group to navigate through the edits.

After all the changes are made, you can review them one by one. This is helpful for accepting or rejecting changes individually.

Once you’ve completed these steps, your Word document will have redlining enabled, and you’ll be able to track all changes made. This can be incredibly useful for collaborative work, as it allows everyone to see what edits have been made and by whom.

Tips for Redlining in Word

  • Always make sure to save a copy of the original document before starting the redlining process. This way, if something goes wrong, you have a backup.
  • If you’re working with a team, it’s helpful to assign each member a different color for their changes. This makes it easier to see who made what changes.
  • Use the ‘Accept’ and ‘Reject’ features in the ‘Changes’ group to finalize edits. This allows you to choose which changes to keep and which to discard.
  • Remember to turn off ‘Track Changes’ when you’re done editing. Otherwise, every change you make will continue to be tracked.
  • You can customize the way Word tracks changes. For example, you can change the color of the markup or how deletions are displayed. To do this, go to ‘Track Changes Options’ in the ‘Tracking’ group.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I forget to turn on ‘Track Changes’ before I start editing?

If you forget to turn on ‘Track Changes’ before you start editing, there’s no way to retroactively track those changes. Always remember to enable this feature before making any edits.

Can I track changes made by specific people?

Yes, Word allows you to track changes by author. Each author’s changes can appear in a different color, making it easy to distinguish between contributors.

How do I accept or reject changes?

To accept or reject changes, use the ‘Accept’ and ‘Reject’ buttons in the ‘Changes’ group under the Review tab. You can do this for individual changes or for all changes at once.

Can I hide the redlining while reading the document?

Yes, you can hide the markup by going to the ‘Tracking’ group and selecting ‘No Markup’ in the ‘Display for Review’ dropdown menu. This will allow you to read the document without the redlines, but the changes will still be tracked.

How do I turn off ‘Track Changes’?

To turn off ‘Track Changes’, simply click the ‘Track Changes’ button again in the ‘Tracking’ group on the Review tab. This will stop tracking any further changes made to the document.


  1. Open your Word document.
  2. Go to the ‘Review’ tab.
  3. Click on ‘Track Changes’.
  4. Make your changes to the document.
  5. Review the changes using the ‘Previous’ and ‘Next’ buttons.


Redlining in Word can greatly enhance your editing process, especially when working with a team. It allows for clear communication, easy revision, and a comprehensive record of all changes made. With the simple steps outlined in this article, you’ll be able to master redlining and take your document editing to a new level of efficiency.

As you become more familiar with the ‘Track Changes’ feature, you’ll discover how it can streamline your workflow and improve collaboration. So, why not give it a try on your next project? You might just wonder how you ever managed without it. Happy editing!

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