Tables in Word

Adding Table Headers

Tables are a great way to organize and share data. However, without proper headings, a person using a screen reader can lose track of where they are in a table. Adding table headers can help those using screen readers know where they are.

Reminders:

  • Use tables for data only – never use tables for page layout.
  • Try to avoid spanning or merging table cells.
  • Don’t leave blank cells.
  • Be aware of contrast when shading cell backgrounds.

How to add Table Headers in Word

  1. Select Table by mousing over the table and clicking on the table selection icon ( Table Selection Icon ) just outside the top left corner of the table.
    • Or use the keyboard shortcut: Alt+5 on the numeric keypad (with Num Lock off).
  2. Select the Design tab under Table Tools in the Office Ribbon
    • Check the Header Row box in Table Style Options
  3. Select (highlight) the Header Row
  4. Select the Layout tab under Table Tools in the Office Ribbon
    • Select Repeat Header Rows in the Data section

Screenshot of a Word context table with arrows pointing to the table selection icon, the design tab and the header row checkbox.

Screenshot of a Word context table with arrows pointing to the header row, layout context tab, and the repeat header rows toggle.

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Accessibility Resources Accessible Tables Tables in Word