How to Rearrange Pages in Word

While you can easily see where the pages in a document start and end in Microsoft Word when you’re in Print Layout, moving those pages to a different location is not as easy. Using a combination of the headings and the Navigation Pane provides an effective solution to rearrange pages in Word.

Microsoft Word is a powerful tool for writing and editing documents. It can be used to create different types of files, such as letters, reports, or presentations. One thing that people often struggle with when using Word is figuring out how to rearrange pages in a document.

In Microsoft Word, you can rearrange pages by dragging them up or down in the page list. You can also drag and drop them to a new position on the page list. Rearranging pages is a great way to optimize your design without removing anything from your document.

Here, we will go over several ways on how to rearrange pages in Word.

How to Change the Order of Pages in a Word Document

  1. Open the Word document.
  2. Click the View tab.
  3. Check the Navigation Pane option.
  4. Click the Headings tab.
  5. Drag headings to the desired order.

Our article continues below with additional information on changing the order of pages in a Word document.

Guide to Rearranging Pages In Word

If the layout of your document has various sections of that document on their own pages, then you may discover that you need to reorganize the order of the document sections. You can do this by copying an entire page and pasting it in the desired location, or you can add headings to each page then use the navigation pane to change the location of the page headings, which will let you quickly move pages to a different location in the document.

As we stated above, there are a couple of ways you can rearrange pages in Microsoft Word:

  • Drag and drop in the Navigation Pane.
  • Cutting and pasting.

The easiest way to rearrange pages in Word is by dragging and dropping them from one position to another in the navigation pane. To move a page up one spot:

  1. Click and hold on the page’s heading in the Navigation Pane, then drag it above the page before it.
  2. To move a page down one spot, do the same thing except with downward motion instead of upward motion.

When you have finished moving all of your pages into a list that makes sense to you, you can click anywhere inside the document body to start editing it normally. You can also choose to click the X at the top-right of the Navigation Pane if you wish to close it.

Cutting and pasting is a little cruder but is the primary option if you don’t have headings. You will simply select all fo the content on a page, press Ctrl + X to cut it, then click in the desired location and press Ctrl + V to paste the cut content. While the Cut and paste process might be a little less precise, it can work for Word documents that don’t or can’t have headings.

The sections below expand on these methods.

How to Use The Navigation Pane to Rearrange Word Pages (Guide with Pictures)

Most of us have struggled with navigating Word documents. Wouldn’t it be easier if we could just drag and drop pages to rearrange them? Well, now you can. The navigation pane in Microsoft Word allows users to quickly move around the document by dragging and dropping pages or sections within the pane.

Note that you will need to have headings on each of your pages to take advantage of this feature.

To access the navigation pane and move pages through there, use the following steps.

Step 1: Click on View in the Microsoft Word toolbar.

click the View tab

Step 2: Click on the Navigation Pane checkbox.

check the box next to Navigation Pane

This will open up the Navigation Pane on the left.

Step 3: In the navigation pane, go to the tab that says Headings.

select the Headings tab

Step 4: Inside the pane, click on the heading of the section you want to move to a new location.

Step 5: Drag and drop the heading to a new preferred location.

how to rearrange pages in Word

Continue dragging and dropping page headings until all of your pages are in the desired order.

It’s very possible that you don’t have headings for the pages in your document. Many people don’t. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to use the method above, so you will need to resort to cutting and pasting.

Moving Pages in Microsoft Word With Your Mouse and Keyboard

While you could click your mouse at the start of a page and drag it to the end of the page to select everything, you might have a little more luck by clicking at the start of the page, then holding down the Shift key and pressing Page Down until the whole page is selected. You can then right-click the selection, choose Cut, then right-click where you want that page, and select Paste.

Here is how you can rearrange multiple pages without your mouse by using the keyboard.

  1. At the beginning of the page, place your cursor on the text you would like to move.
  2. Press the shift and Page Down key to select the text that can fit in a single page. You can keep holding the shift key and keep pressing page down until you have all the desired text highlighted or selected.
  3. Use Ctrl+X key in order to cut the selected text.
  4. Now place or move your cursor to the place where you want to move the page to.
  5. Use Ctrl+V to paste the selected page.

More Information on How to Rearrange Pages in Word

If you don’t already have headings in your document and are struggling with the cut and paste method, then it might be easier to just add headings and use them to move pages, then delete the headings when you’re done.

You can add a heading by adding text to the first line of a page (I like to just label everything as Page 1, Page 2, etc.) then clicking the Home tab and clicking a Heading option from the Styles section.

Now when you go to View > Navigation Pane you will see your added headings under the Headings section allowing you to rearrange your document pages.

Changing the page order of a Microsoft Word document, especially lengthy documents, is really tough if you are using a touchpad instead of a traditional mouse. You may be able to more easily rearrange pages with the headings and navigation pane trick.

If you have Adobe Acrobat then it may be easier to reorder pages by opening the document in that application instead.

  • Ctrl + X – Cut keyboard shortcut (Windows)
  • Command + X – Cut keyboard shortcut (Mac)
  • Ctrl + V – Paste shortcut (Windows)
  • Command + V – Paste shortcut (Mac)

Windows also has a clipboard history tool that you can use to make managing the cut and paste process a little simpler. You can open the clipboard history tool in Windows by using the Windows + V keyboard shortcut. Note that you will need to enable the clipboard history first before you can use it.

Additional Reading