Track Changes is a feature in Microsoft Word that allows others to provide edits and comments within your document. These edits will appear in different colors so you can easily find those recommended changes. This tool also allows a reviewer to provide comments in the right-hand side of your paper.

When a reviewer uses track changes in your document, none of those changes are finalized in your paper. It is up to you to decide if you want to accept or reject their recommendations.

To accept or reject an edit, first, you will right click on the change and choose to either “Accept” or “Reject” the suggestion. If the reviewer has deleted text in your paper, you will choose “Accept Deletion” or “Reject Deletion.” If the reviewer has added content to your paper, you will choose “Accept Insertion” or “Reject Insertion.”

Accept or Reject Change

In the above example, the reviewer has deleted some of our text. In this case, we can choose to accept that deletion and our text will be permanently deleted. Alternatively, we can choose to reject the deletion; Word will then remove the reviewer’s suggestion, and our text will return to the original formatting.

In some cases, you may be asked to use the track changes feature yourself to show your reader what changes you have made to your paper. This is particularly useful if you are submitting multiple drafts of a document; using track changes will allow your reader to easily spot the changes you have made from the last version of the paper. To use this feature, follow the steps below.

  1. Click on Review

    To use this feature, you will need to first turn on track changes in your document. To do this, first click on “Review” in the Word toolbar, as shown below.Revieiw Tab
  2. Click on Track Changes

    Next, click on "Track Changes." You will know it is on when it becomes shaded, as shown below:Track Changes
  3. Edit

    The Track Changes feature will now be active, so any changes you make in your document will look different from the text around it. For example, in the image below, the changes we have made are in red font.Edit
  4. Turn off Track Changes

    If you would like to turn off this feature, click on the “Track Changes” button again. You will know it is off when the button is no longer shaded.

The comment feature in word allows a reviewer to include suggestions or additional resources in the right-hand margin of a paper. In some cases, you might want to insert a comment in a document to ask a reviewer a question, or you might be required to share feedback with a peer or colleague using this tool. To insert comments, follow the steps below.

  1. Highlight Text

    First, locate where you want to insert a comment. Place the cursor in that spot, or highlight a section of text you would like to comment on.
  2. Click "Review"

    Next, click on the “Review” tab in the toolbar.Review
  3. Click "New Comment"

    New Comment
  4. Type Your Comment

    A comment will now appear in the right-hand margin. To add your idea or suggestion, click anywhere inside the comment and begin typing.Type a comment

To delete a comment, right click on the comment and select “Delete Comment.” This will permanently delete that comment from your document.