How to Create a Check Box in a Word Document

When creating a list, Word 2013 enables you to insert check boxes so that users can select between multiple options. While you can create a printable check list with little to no hassle, lists that you want a user to check off electronically require enabling Word 2013's Developer tab.

Printable Checklist

Highlight a list of items and then click the Home tab. In the Paragraph group, click the arrow-shaped button next to the Bullets button, and then select Define New Bullet. Click the Symbol button on the Define New Bullet dialog box to open a list of symbols on your computer. Select Windings or Windings 2 from the Font pull-down menu, and then select a check box symbol that you prefer. Click OK to add check boxes to the selected items.

Windings fonts feature various types of check box symbols.
Image Credit: Image courtesy of Microsoft


Once you insert a check box symbol, you can find it listed in the Bullet Library, accessible by clicking the arrow-shaped button next to the Bullets button.

Fillable Check Boxes

Right-click anywhere within the Word 2013 ribbon, and then click Customize the Ribbon. On the Word Options dialog box, check the Developer box under Main Tabs, and then click OK to enable the Developer tab. Place the cursor where you want the check box to appear, and then click the Developer tab. On the Controls group, select Check Box Content Control to insert a check box. Repeat the process to insert additional check boxes.

Double-click the Developer tab to prevent it from minimizing.
Image Credit: Image courtesy of Microsoft


By default, clicking a check box displays an X symbol within the box. To change this to another symbol, click on a check box, open the Developer tab, and then click Properties in the Controls group. On the Content Controls Properties pop-up box, use the Change button next to Checked Symbol to select a different symbol, and then click OK.


Unlike bullet symbols, you can't insert multiple check box content controls at once.