How to Create Drop-Down Menus for Word Document

By Tara Duggan

Use Microsoft Word forms to allow users to enter information. Create a drop-down menu in a Microsoft Word form document when you don't want your users to provide free-form input. A menu restricts the choices users can make and enables to you to produce reports of results more easily. By creating a comprehensive list of possible choices, you allow users to select the most appropriate choice more easily. Including clear directions ensures that users complete the form properly.

Step 1

Click the "Office" button in Microsoft Word and then click the "Word Options" button. Click the "Popular" option. Select the "Show Developer tab in the Ribbon" check box. Click the "OK" button.

Step 2

Open a new Word document. Click where you want to add your drop-down menu. Enter a sentence describing what you want your users to choose. For example, "Several options exist to personalize your information, which one do you want?"

Step 3

Click the "Design Mode" button in the "Controls" group of the "Developer" menu. Select the "Drop-Down List" control to add the menu.

Step 4

Add the choices for your menu. Click the "Properties" button in the "Controls" group of the "Developer" menu. Enter a title, such as "Choices Menu." Then, click the "Add" button to add your choices.

Step 5

Type a choice such as "Option 1" in the "Display Name" box and click the "OK" button.

Step 6

Repeat the previous step to add more choices.

Step 7

Add instructions to your menu. For example, select the "Choose an item" text and click the "Modify..." button. Enter new instructions such as "Select an option. Then print this file and mail it" and click the "OK" button.

Step 8

Click the "OK" button to close the "Content Control Properties" dialog box. Click the "Design Mode" button to complete your design.

Step 9

Press "Ctrl-S" to save the file.

Step 10

Click the "Protect Document" button on the "Developer" tab of the "Protect" group and then click the "Restrict Formatting and Editing" option. Under the "Editing restrictions" section, select the "Allow only this type of editing in the document" check box and then select "Filling in forms" in the list of editing restrictions. Click the "Yes, Start Enforcing Protection" button under the "Start enforcement."

Step 11

Enter a password if you want to restrict access to form to those who know the password. Click the "OK" button. Save and distribute your form via email or a website.