Tip of the week # 547
9 July 2018

Create different headers or footers for odd and even pages (Microsoft Word) *

Today's tip is inspired by Phil, the Manager Director at Cambridge Print Solutions, the company who has been printing my course handouts for donkey's year. (I highly recommend Cambridge Print Solutions. I have been using them to print my training manuals since August 2006 and they have always delivered on time, occasionally at short notice - with a smile and a chat. And no, I'm not getting commission for this recommendation.)

The most common question they apparently get is about different headers and footers on the left and right side of booklets. As you know, the headers and footers in Word are normally the same on each page. But it is really simple to specify that odd-numbered pages have a different header and footer from even-numbered pages.

Here's how:

  1. Double-click anywhere in the header or footer area of an odd page (1, 3, 5 etc.).
  2. Select the Different Odd & Even Pages check box in the Options group.
  3. In the Header & Footer group click on the Header or Footer button.
  4. Select the preferred style from the dropdown list (some are specifically for odd or even page layouts) or click on Edit Header or Edit Footer and type your own.
  5. Click on the Next button in the Navigation group.
  6. Select the preferred style from the dropdown list or type your own as described in step 4.
  7. Double-click anywhere in the body of your document or click on the Close Header and Footer button.

There are a lot of other clever things you can do with headers and footers such as numbering on pages in landscape orientation, but you'll need to work with section breaks for that. More about that some other time.

Related tips

  1. Tip # 366: Add the file name and path to the header or footer (tip_366.php)
  2. Tip # 490: Temporarily hide page breaks, headers and footers (tip_490.php)


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* Unless stated otherwise, these tips were written for Microsoft Office 2010.