How to Count the Number of Characters in a Word Document

By Rachel Brewster

If your writing needs to fit into a predetermined space, like in a column or on a sign, it's helpful to know the number of characters your writing contains. Microsoft Word 2007 provides the option of counting the characters in part of the document or the entire document, and gives you the ability to count characters including or not including spaces.

Step 1

Highlight the portion of text in which you want to count characters by placing the cursor at the end of the text portion, clicking the mouse, and holding the button down while moving the cursor to the beginning of the text portion. Release the mouse button, leaving the entire text portion highlighted.

Step 2

Click the "Review" tab at the top of the screen.

Step 3

Click on the word count icon, represented by the icon "ABC123," in the "Proofing" window, which is normally located at the far left-hand side at the top of your screen. The "Word Count" window will open. The third statistic listed will be "Characters (no spaces)," and the fourth will be "Characters (with spaces)."

Step 4

Uncheck the "Include textboxes, footnotes, and endnotes" box if you do not wish to include these in your count. If you do wish to include them, or if there are none in the section of text you are counting, leave the check in the box.