How to use VBA for the start and end of Microsoft Word documents

VBA is a very simple way to navigate a Microsoft Word document. However, it is not intuitive.

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Visual Basic for Applications allows you to automate tasks. VBA in Word is not without its problems. First, you have to move around in Word because there are so many types of content, including text, images, tables, and so forth. This tutorial will show you how to navigate using VBA. The first identifies the start of a Word document and the second identifies its end.

Microsoft 365 is being used on Windows 10 64-bit. However, you can also use an older version. The demo files can be accessed here. VBA is not supported by Word for the Web.

ActiveDocument – Microsoft Word VBA

In both of these procedures, the ActiveDocument property is the main VBA component. It returns a Document object representing the active document. This opens the entire document. This is not necessary for every VBA procedure in Word. However, it will be useful when you need to refer to “parts” within the document.

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This property returns an error if there is no Word document open. This property can be used from within Excel or PowerPoint.

The following form is used for this property:

  • ActiveDocument
  • where expression is the variable that represents the Application object (Word). This is implicitly implied in Word.
  • Next is the Range method. This uses the form.
  • Range(start, end)

To return a Range object. This method will be used to identify an area in the document.

There is no way to say “go to beginning” or “go back to end”, so we will use both the start and the end arguments to identify them. Both arguments can be used, but they are optional. As you might guess, start identifies a character position, while end identifies a character position.

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Let’s now move onto the actual VBA processes.

How to use VBA for finding the beginning of a Word file

It is very easy to move the cursor from the beginning of a Word file using VBA. The procedure is shown in Listing A. The procedure starts by declaring and defining a range object. It uses 0s to identify where the document’s beginning is. Two 0s will position the cursor in front of any content within the active document. The second line adds text, while the constant vbNewLine adds a line.

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How to use VBA for finding the end of a Word file

There is no way to say “go to the ending”, so we must force the issue by finding and removing the last character. This is slightly more complicated, but it’s not too difficult as you can see in Listing B. Similar to the first, this procedure enters text at the end. It does so by using the Last property from the Characters object.


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