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How to Create Fillable Forms with Microsoft Word

Create fillable forms with options that you can send to people and have them fill out digitally.
Whether you need a form for gathering information about people or if you are trying to take a
survey to test out user response to software or a new product, MS Word has the solution for you.

Enable the Developer Tab

In order to create fillable forms, you will need to start by enabling the developer tab by clicking on the File
drop-down menu and then choose Options. Open the Customize Ribbon tab and select the Main Tabs
option under Customize the Ribbon.

Now you will need to select the Developer box and press OK.

Once you have done this, you will notice that an additional menu has been added to the top of the screen with
several new developer options.

To Template, or Not to Template?

There are two main options to get started with your form creation. Option one is easy to use if you can find a
template that suits your needs. To find templates, Click on the File menu, select New. You will see many
premade templates available for download. Simply click on Forms and look through the selection of templates
to find one that suits your needs.

When you have found your template, just download it and edit the form as needed.
The best way to create forms from scratch: Begin by navigating to the template options again, but instead of
selecting a pre-made form, select My Templates.

Now you will need to click the Templates check-circle and then press OK to create a blank template. Lastly,
press Ctrl + S to save the document. We will call it, Form Template 1.

Populate the Form

Now that you have a blank template, you are ready to start adding information to the form. The form we will
create in this example is a simple form to collect information about people who fill them out. First, you will need
to enter the basic questions. For this tutorial, we will try to get the following information:
1. Name (Plain Text Response)
2. Age (Drop-Down List)
3. D.O.B. (Date Response)
4. Sex (Check Box)
5. Zip Code (Plain Text Response)
6. Phone Number (Plain Text Response)
7. Favorite Primary Color and why: (Combo Box)
8. Best Pizza Toppings (Check Box and Plain Text Response)
9. What is your dream job and why? Limit your answer to 200 words (Rich Text Response)
10. What type of vehicle do you drive? (Plain Text Response)
Click on the Developer tab which you added earlier and under the Controls section, choose Design Mode
to begin creating different control options. If you want to see what it looks like in action, remember to deselect
the Design Mode option.

Text Sections
For any answers that require a text based answer, you can add text sections. You will do this by selecting the Rich
Text Content Control
(allows users to edit formatting) or the Plain Text Content Control
plain text without formatting) option.

(only allows

Lets enable a rich text response for question 9, and then a plain text response for question 1, 5, 6, and 10.

Remember that you can edit the text in the content control boxes to match the questions by clicking in them and
typing as seen in the image above.

Add a Date Selection Option

If you need to add dates, you can add the Date Picker Content Control.
question 3.

Lets Use this and add it to

Insert a Drop-Down List with Options

For questions that only allow one answer such as numbers (question 2), a drop-down list
is handy. We will
add simple list and populate it with age ranges. You will need to add the content control box, right-click on it, and
select the Properties option. Next, click on add to add age ranges.

When you are done, it should look something like this (Design Mode Disabled).

Alternatively, you can add a Combo Box,

which will allow you to add any options you want, as well as
allow users to enter additional text if needed. Lets add a combo box to question 7. Since it is a combo box, users
will be able to select an option and type why they like the color.

Add Check Boxes

For the fourth question, we will add check box options.
You will first enter your options (male and female).
Now you can add the check box content control after each option.

Repeat the process for any other questions that require one or more options. We will add check boxes to question
8 as well. We will also add a plain text response box for any toppings not listed.

Wrapping Up
The completed blank form should look like the images below depending on whether you have design mode
enabled or disabled.

Design Mode Enabled

Design Mode Disabled

Congratulations, you have just learned the basics of creating interactive forms.

How to Create Fillable PDF Files

Read more :

1. Open your PDF form in Acrobat. Click on the "Form" tool, which is the icon that looks like a document
on top of a dotted-line rectangle. It is located next to the "T" button.
2. Type in a name for the field, for example, "First Name." This name is for your use only, and it primarily
serves an organizational purpose.
3. Select the field type for the fillable field. Make sure you select an appropriate field type for the type of
question that you are asking. For example, if the field is "First name," then "Text" would be an
appropriate field choice. On the other hand, if the field is "Gender," "Radio buttons" might be appropriate.
Experiment with the different types of form fields to see what they do in action.
4. Modify the behavior and appearance of the form. For example, you can remove borders via the
"Appearance" tab, restrict the number of characters that can be typed into the form via the "Options" tab,
or allow users to automatically make calculations with typed-in form information via the "Calculate" tab.
Click "OK" to save the changes.
5. Click on "File" and "Save As" to save your form. Distribute it to your users to allow them to fill it out and
print it.
Read more :

How To Save Fillable Form Data in PDFs

Fillable PDF forms are much more convenient than filling out pieces of paper by hand, but wouldnt it be nice to
save the forms that youve filled out? Nothing would be worse than having to fill out the same boring paperwork

Having a filled out copy of the form isnt just good for your records, its also useful if you notice a typo or
small mistake after printing out the form. If you accidentally close Adobe Reader, then youll have to type in all
that information again!
Fortunately there is a free PDF viewing program that allows you fill out fillable forms and save the changes, to
be edited later if need be: PDF-XChange Viewer.
After you install PDF-XChange Viewer, open your fillable PDF form (right-click and choose Open With if
PDF-XChange Viewer isnt the default for opening PDFs).

Fill out the form.

Click on File > Save, or just press Ctrl+S.

Close the file. If you open it again, you will see that your changes are still intact! In fact, even if you open this
file with Adobe Reader, you will find that your changes are still there.

Thats all you need to do!

We did run into a few cases where the filled out form didnt open quite right in Adobe Reader, even though it still
looked fine in PDF-XChange Viewer. You should keep Adobe Reader around just to confirm that your filled out
forms look right if you have to send them digitally.
PDF-XChange Viewer is a great all-purpose PDF viewer, and the ability to save filled out PDF forms makes it
even better!

Convert an existing form into a fillable PDF form with Adobe Acrobat XI
Easily convert forms to fillable PDF forms from paper or existing electronic files, such as Microsoft
Word files. Automatically recognize and convert static fields to fillable ones with a form wizard.
1. At the top right in Acrobat, click the Tools pane.
2. Open the Forms panel. Click Create.
3. Select Existing Document and click Next.
4. Choose one of the following options.
Use the current document or choose another file
If using a different document, browse to the file and click Continue.
Scan a paper form and convert it into a PDF fillable form
Click Continue. Select the scanner and a color mode. Follow the instructions for your scanner to scan
the form.
After each page, Acrobat asks if the scan is complete or if you need to scan more pages.
Acrobat analyzes the document and adds interactive form fields. Inspect the form fields list in the
Fields panel. You use the form names when collecting and analyzing data, so make sure that each
name is unique and descriptive. To change a field name, double click and type the desired name in the
General tab. Click close.
6. To edit fields, select the field and click Edit Fields in the Tasks panel. You can also add fields.

7. At the top of the Forms Editing toolbar, click Preview (This button toggles between Edit and
Preview.) to display the form as a recipient will see it and to test form behavior.
To return to editing mode, click Edit.
8. When finished, at the top right in Acrobat, click the Close Form Editing button. Save your PDF form.
Tip: To learn how to create a form from scratch or template, see Create a form from scratch or a
template in Acrobat XI Pro.
Tip: To distribute your form and analyze responses, see Distribute PDF forms and analyze responses
with Acrobat XI Pro

Create a fillable form

To create a form in Word that others can fill out, start with a template and add content controls.
Content controls include things like check boxes, text boxes, date pickers, and drop-down lists. If
youre familiar with databases, these content controls can even be linked to data.
Creating a fillable form begins with six basic steps. Lets walk through them below.

Step 1: Show the Developer tab


Click the File tab.


Click Options.


Click Customize Ribbon.


Under Customize the Ribbon, in the list under Main Tabs, select the Developer check box, and then

Step 2: Open a template or a document on which to base the form

To save time, start with a form template. To start from scratch, start with a blank template. Start with a form template

Click the File tab.


Click New.


In the Search online templates box, type the type of for you want to create and press ENTER.


Click the form template that you want to use, and then click Create.

Start with a blank template


Click the File tab.


Click New.


Click Blank document.

Step 3: Add content to the form

On the Developer tab, click Design Mode, and then insert the controls that you want.

NOTE You can print a form that was created using content controls, but the boxes around the content controls will

not print.

Insert a text control where users can enter text

In a rich text content control, users can format text as bold or italic, and they can type multiple paragraphs. If you
want to limit what users add, insert the plain text content control.

Click where you want to insert the control.


On the Developer tab, click Rich Text Content Control

or Plain Text Content Control

To set specific properties on the control, see Step 4: Set or change properties for content controls.

Insert a picture control

A picture control is often used for templates, but you can also add a picture control to a form.

Click where you want to insert the control.


On the Developer tab, click Picture Content Control.

To set specific properties on the control, see Step 4: Set or change properties for content controls.

Insert a building block control

Use building block controls when you want people to choose a specific block of text. For example, building block
controls are helpful if youre setting up a contract template, and you need to add different boilerplate text depending
on the contracts specific requirements. You can create rich text content controls for each version of the boilerplate
text, and then you can use a building block control as the container for the rich text content controls.
You can also use a building block control in a form.

Click where you want to insert the control.


On the Developer tab, in the Controls group, click a content control:

To set specific properties on the control, see Step 4: Set or change properties for content controls.

Insert a combo box or a drop-down list

In a combo box, users can select from a list of choices that you provide or they can type in their own information. In a
drop-down list, users can only select from the list of choices.

On the Developer tab, click Combo Box Content Control

or Drop-Down List Content Control


Select the content control, and then on the Developer tab, click Properties.


To create a list of choices, click Add under Drop-Down List Properties.


Type a choice in the Display Name box, such as Yes, No, or Maybe.
Repeat this step until all of the choices are in the drop-down list.


Fill in any other properties that you want.


If you select the Contents cannot be edited check box, users wont be able to click a choice.

Insert a date picker


Click where you want to insert the date picker control.


On the Developer tab, click the Date Picker Content Control.

To set specific properties on the control, see Step 4: Set or change properties for content controls.

Insert a check box


Click where you want to insert the check box control.


On the Developer tab, click the Check Box Content Control.

To set specific properties on the control, see Step 4: Set or change properties for content controls.

Step 4: Set or change properties for content controls

Each content control has properties that you can set or change. For example, the Date Picker control offers options for
the format you want to use to display the date.

Click the content control that you want to change.


On the Developer tab, click Properties, and change the properties that you want.

Step 5: Add instructional text to the form

Instructional text can enhance the usability of the form you create and distribute. You can change the default
instructional text in content controls.
To customize the default instructional text for your form users, do the following:

On the Developer tab, click Design Mode.


Click the content control where you want to revise the placeholder instructional text.


Edit the placeholder text and format it any way you want.


On the Developer tab, click Design Mode to turn off the design feature and save the instructional text.
NOTE Do not select the Contents cannot be edited check box if you want form users to replace the instructional

text with their own text.

Step 6: Add protection to a form

If you want to limit how much others can edit or format a form, use the Restrict Editing command:

Open the form that you want to lock or protect.


Click Home > Select > Select All, or press CTRL+A.


Click Developer > Restrict Editing.

If you want, you can test the form prior to distributing it. Open the form, fill it out as the user would, and then
save a copy in a location that you want.