How to Insert a Callout in Microsoft Word

Callouts enable authors to draw attention to specific information in a document or image. Callouts can be simple geometric shapes with text in them, or shapes with arrows or pointers indicating where in the text or image the information applies. In Microsoft Word, you can create callouts using the Insert tab.

Woman thinking blackboard
A thought bubble is a type of callout.
credit: Maridav/iStock/Getty Images

Insert a Pre-Designed Callout

To insert a callout in a Word document, click the “Insert” tab, then in the Illustrations group, click “Shapes.” Pre-designed callout shapes are located at the bottom of the shapes gallery. Click on the desired callout, then click and drag in your document to insert the shape into the page. As with any image that you insert into the document, you can use the sizing handles to resize the shape. Click on the shape, and type the desired text.

Design a Callout

To design your own callout shape, click the “Insert” tab, then in the Illustrations group, click “Shapes.” Select any shape, then click on the page and drag to insert the shape. To add a pointer to the shape, open the shapes gallery again, and select one of the lines. If you select an arrow, the arrow tip will be at the end of the line you draw by clicking and dragging as was done for other shapes. Select the arrow and move it to point to specific information in the text. To add text to the shape, right-click the shape, and then click “Add Text.” Tools to change the colors of the shape, shape border, or text can be accessed by right-clicking on the shape, then clicking “Format Shape.”