How to Create Quick Tables in Word 2008 for Mac

Tables help you organize ideas or data that would be tedious to slog through and hard to comprehend in regular paragraph form. With Word 2008 for Mac, you can easily create tables — sometimes called grids — anywhere in your documents. The easiest way to create tables is with one of the best new features in Office 2008, the Elements Gallery’s Quick Tables. With this feature, you just click the thumbnail of a fully formatted table, and it immediately appears at the insertion point.

To use Quick Tables, first choose any of the views with Layout as its last name — which is to say, choose View→Web Layout, Print Layout, Notebook Layout, or Publishing Layout.

Click the Quick Tables tab in the Elements Gallery at the top of the window to reveal the Quick Table thumbnails. You see two categories of Quick Tables, Basic and Complex, each with a button in the upper-left corner of the Elements Gallery. Clicking the Basic button reveals the dozen basic Quick Table thumbnails; clicking the Complex button reveals 11 more complex Quick Table thumbnails. Just click a thumbnail to insert that type of table in your document at the insertion point.

The dozen Basic table designs are all simple grids, each with a different color and/or shading combination applied to it. The 11 Complex tables, however, are more detailed and include six different calendar designs, plus tables for driving directions, an invoice, a quarterly report, a generic report, and a specification table.

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