How-To

How to Create a Checklist in Microsoft Word

If there’s one thing that can help you get multiple tasks done it’s a checklist. And if you prefer to use digital tools rather than a physical pen and paper, consider Microsoft Word for this job.

You can create two types of checklists in Word depending on your needs. First, is a list with empty boxes that you can print and mark off items as you go. Second, is a list with boxes that you can fill in Word itself as you complete your tasks.

Both types of checklists have their purpose and show we’ll show you how to create each one.

Create a Printable Checklist in Microsoft Word

If you want to print your checklist you can pop empty boxes or circles next to your list items. Then, put the list on the fridge for your family’s chores, hand copies out to your students for your class, or take it with you to the supermarket.

There are various ways you can create a printable checklist, so we’ll show you one of the fastest methods.

  1. Open a blank word document.
  2. Move to the first line where you want to add a list item.
  3. Go to the Home tab, click the drop-down list for Bullets, and choose the empty circle for the bullet type.Home tab, Bullets button, pick Circles
  4. When the circle displays, type your first list item. Each time you hit Enter or Return after a list item, a new empty circle appears, ready for your next list item.
  5. You can make the circles bigger so they’re easier to mark with checkmarks or X’s. Select one of the circles which will highlight them all. Then use the size drop-down box in the Font section of the ribbon on the Home. If you choose a larger size for the circles, this will not affect the size for the rest of your text.

Resize Bullets in Word

Pick Different Symbols

If you want to make your checklist more fun and or just use something besides circles, you can make a custom bullet list.

  1. Go to the Home tab, click the drop-down list for Bullets, and choose Define New Bullet.Define a New Bullet List
  2. Click Symbol.
  3. In the pop-up window, choose a different Font style such as Wingdings which offers a variety of basic and funky symbols.
  4. Pick the symbol you want to use, click OK, and then OK once more.

Symbols For Bullets in Word

You can then start a new bullet list using the symbol or if you already had the circles as described above, they’ll transform to the symbol you chose.

Printable Checklist in Microsoft Word

You can then print your checklist as you would any other Word document with File > Print.

Create a Fillable Checklist in Microsoft Word

If you want to keep your checklist on your computer and mark the items off there, you can use a Word form control check box. This lets you just click the box to mark your items.

  1. Open a blank Word document.
  2. Before you add a list item, go to the Developer tab and click the Check Box in the Controls section of the ribbon. (If you don’t see this tab, head to our tutorial for how to add the Developer tab in Office.)Check Box Form Control
  3. When your check box appears, move your cursor outside of it to the right and enter your list item.
  4. Hit Enter to go to the next row and do the same thing: Add a Check Box, move to the right of it, and enter your item.

Add a Check Box and List Item in Microsoft Word

Save your checklist with File > Save or Save As. When you’re ready to use your checklist, just click the check box and an X will be placed in it.

Fillable Checklist in Microsoft Word

Make Your List and Check it Twice

If you enjoy creating things like this in Word, then this tutorial should get you off to a great start! Whether you want a printable checklist or a fillable one, it’s easy enough to create a checklist in Microsoft Word and worth it when it’s time to use it. Also, check out how to sort lists in Word alphabetically.

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