How to Split Text Box into Two Columns in Word: A Step-by-Step Guide

Splitting a text box into two columns in Word is a simple task that can significantly improve the readability and visual appeal of your document. It’s a nifty trick that can help you organize your text better, especially in newsletters, brochures, or articles. In less than a minute, you’ll learn how to take a chunk of text and neatly arrange it into two columns, just like in your favorite magazine or newspaper.

Step by Step Tutorial: Splitting a Text Box into Two Columns in Word

Before we dive into the steps, let’s quickly cover what we’ll be doing. By following these instructions, you’ll turn a single-column text box into a two-column layout, which can be very useful for certain types of documents.

Step 1: Open your document in Word

Open the document you want to edit in Microsoft Word.

Once you have your document open, find the text box you want to split into columns. If you haven’t inserted a text box yet, you can simply click on the ‘Insert’ tab and then select ‘Text Box’ to add one.

Step 2: Select the text box

Click on the text box to select it.

You’ll know the text box is selected when you see the outline of the box with small squares on the corners and sides. These are called handles, and you can use them to resize the text box if needed.

Step 3: Navigate to the "Layout" or "Page Layout" tab

Click on the "Layout" or "Page Layout" tab in the ribbon at the top of the Word window.

The name of this tab might differ depending on the version of Word you’re using. In some versions, it might be called ‘Page Layout’, and in others, it could just be ‘Layout’.

Step 4: Click on "Columns"

Find and click on the "Columns" button within the Layout tab.

The ‘Columns’ button is usually located in the ‘Page Setup’ group of options. It might show an icon with several vertical lines or just the word ‘Columns’.

Step 5: Choose "Two"

Select "Two" from the drop-down menu that appears after clicking on "Columns".

Choosing ‘Two’ will automatically split your text box into two columns. You’ll see the effect immediately on your document.

After completing these steps, your text will now be neatly organized into two columns within the text box. This can make your document look more professional and easier to read.

Tips for Splitting a Text Box into Two Columns in Word

  • Ensure that the text box is large enough to accommodate two columns. If it’s too small, the text might look squished or might not fit.
  • Adjust the spacing between the columns if necessary. You can do this by going back to the ‘Columns’ menu and clicking ‘More Columns’ for advanced settings.
  • Consider the length of your text. If the text is too short, splitting it into two columns might not be necessary.
  • Use column breaks to control where the text flows from one column to the next. You can insert a column break by going to the ‘Layout’ tab and clicking on ‘Breaks’.
  • Keep in mind that column formatting applies to the entire text box. If you only want part of the text in columns, you might need to use separate text boxes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I split a text box into more than two columns?

Yes, you can split a text box into more than two columns by selecting the desired number of columns from the ‘Columns’ drop-down menu.

What happens if my text box is too small for two columns?

If your text box is too small, the text may overflow, become too compressed, or not all text will be visible. You should resize the text box to ensure there’s enough space for both columns.

Can I adjust the width of each column?

Yes, you can adjust the width of each column by selecting ‘More Columns’ from the ‘Columns’ menu and customizing the column width settings.

How do I format the text within the columns?

You can format the text just like you would in a standard document. Highlight the text and use the formatting options in the ‘Home’ tab to change the font, size, color, and more.

Can I add images within the columns?

Yes, you can add images within the columns. Just insert the image as you normally would, and it will conform to the column’s width.


  1. Open your document in Word
  2. Select the text box
  3. Navigate to the "Layout" or "Page Layout" tab
  4. Click on "Columns"
  5. Choose "Two"


Mastering the art of splitting a text box into two columns in Word can really set your documents apart. It’s a simple yet powerful technique that can transform a plain block of text into something that’s visually engaging and easier to read. Remember, presentation matters just as much as the content itself. By utilizing columns, you’re not only organizing your text in a way that’s aesthetically pleasing but also helping your readers process the information better.

Whether you’re creating a newsletter, a brochure, or just a regular report, knowing how to split a text box into two columns in Word is an essential skill. It’s one of those little tweaks that show you really understand how to make the most out of your word processor. So, go ahead, give it a try, and watch as your document transforms before your eyes. Who knows, you might just get a few compliments on your snazzy formatting skills! And if you do run into any troubles, remember the tips and frequently asked questions in this article—they’re here to help you navigate any column conundrums with ease.

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