How to Show word count in MS Word

Word counts the number of words in a document while you type. Word also counts pages, paragraphs, lines, and characters.

In Windows

When you need to know how many words, pages, characters, paragraphs, or lines are in a document, check the status bar.

Partial word count

For a partial word count, select the words you want to count. The status bar shows the word count for that selection and for the entire document.

Word count detail

Tip: Find the number of characters, paragraphs, and lines by clicking on the word count in the status bar.

On macOS

Count the number of characters, lines, and paragraphs

You can view the number of characters, lines, paragraphs, and other information in your Word for Mac, by clicking the word count in the status bar to open the Word Count box. Unless you have selected some text, Word counts all text in the document, as well as the characters, and displays them in the Word Count box as the Statistics.

Word count dialog box

Count the number of words in a part of a document

To count the number of words in only part of your document, select the text you want to count. Then on the Tools menu, click Word Count.

On Web

Just like the Word desktop program, Word for the web counts words while you type.

Word Count

If you don’t see the word count at the bottom of the window, make sure you’re in Editing view (click Edit Document > Edit in Word for the web).

Click the word count to switch it off and on.

Word Count Disabled

Maybe you noticed that Word for the web gives you an approximate word count. That’s because it doesn’t count words in areas like text boxes, headers, footers, and SmartArt graphics. If you need an exact count, click Open in Word, and look at the word count at the bottom of the Word document window.

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