Insert two page-numbering schemes in a Word document

Applies to
Microsoft Word 2002

Sometimes just one set of page numbers isn't enough. If you've combined two documents into one, or included a preface, introduction, or table of contents in your document, then you might want two page-numbering schemes. In Word, you can use one scheme to number the pages per section type, and another to count the total number of pages in your document. For example, the illustration below shows a five-page document containing two sections, each of which is numbered separately from the total number of pages in the document.

Document with more than one numbering scheme

1 Five page document with two sections.

2 Page 2 of section one in the five-page document.

3 Page 1 of section two in the five-page document.

When you insert a page number in your document (which, behind the scenes, actually inserts the PAGE field code in the header or footer of your document), Word displays either the number of the pages within the section or the number of the page within your entire document, but does not display both. Basically, Word contains no built-in method for applying two page-numbering schemes in a single document. One easy solution is to insert field codes through the Header and Footer.

This article provides two ways of doing this — a quick method, which requires you to update page numbers in the field code if you revise your document, and a more technical method, which automates the entire process. First, it will help to get a better understanding of how page numbering works in Word.

So what's in a page number?

The value that the PAGE field displays on a given page is determined by two factors: the "start at" value assigned to a document section (whether the page numbering is set to continue from the previous section or start at a new value); and the location of the page within that section. A new, blank document consists of a single section. If you insert a section break into that document, it will then consist of two sections, and the actual section break will contain the formatting and styles contained in the second section or part of the document.

Understanding the basic function of sections helps in learning how page numbers work in Word, because page numbers are tied to the section property, not the document property. Sections are formal breaks within a document that permit the introduction of a new format or paper size. Such new formats can include changing information in a document header and footer, the very places where page numbers are stored.

When you insert page numbers in your document using the Page Numbers dialog box or the Insert Page Number button on the Header and Footer toolbar, Word is actually placing a field code in either the header or footer (whichever you initially specify). Specifically, that field code is called the PAGE field and it appears as { PAGE } when the field code is displayed in your document. This field is simply a code or message that tells Word to display the current page number on the page where the field code resides. As page numbers change, your page numbers update accordingly, and this is thanks to your friendly field codes.

 Note   In the following procedures, certain steps require you to enter page numbers and other information by inserting field codes. Be sure to insert all field codes by pressing CTRL+F9 on the keyboard and typing the specified information between the brackets. Word does not recognize the brackets as field codes if you insert them any other way.

The quick method

Before numbering pages per section in your document, if you haven't already done so, you first need to create sections in your document. Your document may contain separate sections for a preface, a table of contents, or an inserted document spanning, for example, seven pages.

To insert a section break

  1. Click the location in the document where you want to insert a section break.
  2. On the Insert menu, click Break.
  3. Under Section break types, click the option you want.
  4. Repeat steps 1 through 3 for each section break you want to insert.

To display page numbers per section in your document

  1. On the View menu, click Header and Footer.
  2. If you want to place page numbers per section in the footer rather than the header, click the Switch Between Header and Footer button.
  3. On the Formatting toolbar, choose the alignment option you want.
  4. To insert page numbers, click the Insert Page Number button.
  5. To start numbering at page 1 for the first section in your document, click Format Page Number, in the Start at check box, enter 1, and then click OK.
  6. To start numbering at page 1 for each consecutive section, click the Show Next button, and then repeat step 5.
  7. To display page numbers per section if the PAGE field is displayed in your document, press ALT+F9.

To display the total number of pages in your document

For Word to recognize brackets as field codes, you must enter brackets by pressing CTRL+F9 on the keyboard. You cannot copy and paste the field-code syntax provided in these procedures directly into your document.

  1. On the View menu, click Header and Footer.
  2. With the pointer in Section 1 of either the header or footer (wherever you want the global page numbering to appear), on the Formatting toolbar, click the alignment option you want.
  3. Enter the following in the first section of your document by pressing CTRL+F9 on your keyboard:

    Page { PAGE } of { NUMPAGES }

    and then click the Show Next button to move to the next section of your document.
  4. To make the page numbers continue from the first section of your document, add the number of pages contained in the previous section to the PAGE field code. For example, if the first section contains 4 pages, then the field code in the second section would be: Page { = { PAGE} + 4 } of { NUMPAGES }.

 Note   To add the number of pages contained in the previous section to the PAGE field code, you will first need to delete the { PAGE } field code.

  1. Repeat step 4 for each section in your document after the first section.
    Keep in mind that the number of pages you add to the formula increases with each new section. For example, if the first section contains 4 pages, and the second 8 pages, then the field code in the first header of the third section would be: Page { = { PAGE} + 12 } of { NUMPAGES }. Additionally, if you revise the document so that the number of pages changes, you will need to adjust the number in the field code accordingly.
  2. Click Close on the Header and Footer toolbar, and then press ALT+F9 to display your global numbering scheme.
  3. To ensure that your page-numbering scheme is correct, on the View menu, switch between Page Layout and Normal views. This will refresh all field codes.

 Note   If you do not want to display document numbers in the "x of y" format, simply delete everything except the PAGE field. The result in the first section's header would then look like { PAGE }, and in subsequent sections would take the form of { = { PAGE} + 4 }, and so on.

The more technical method (automates the entire page-numbering process)

Word does not have a built-in dual page-numbering command. However, there is a way to add two sets of page numbers using field codes. First, if you haven't already done so, you need to place the parts of your document in sections using Word's section break feature. Your sections may include a preface, a table of contents, or an inserted document spanning, for example, seven pages.

To insert a section break

  1. Click the location in the document where you want to insert a section break.
  2. On the Insert menu, click Break.
  3. Under Section break types, click the option you want.
  4. Repeat steps 1 through 3 for each section break you want to insert.

To display page numbers per section in your document

  1. On the View menu, click Header and Footer.
  2. If you want to place page numbers per section in the footer rather than the header, click the Switch Between Header and Footer button.
  3. On the Formatting toolbar, choose the alignment option you want.
  4. To make sure you're in section 1 of your document, click the Show Previous button until you reach the first page of your document.
  5. To insert page numbers, click the Insert Page Number button.
  6. To start numbering at page 1 for the first section in your document, click Format Page Number. In the Start at check box, enter 1, and then click OK.
  7. To start numbering at page 1 for each consecutive section, click the Show Next button, and then repeat step 6.
  8. On the the Header and Footer toolbar, click Close, and then to display page numbers per section in your document, press ALT+F9.

To calculate pages per section and total pages

For Word to recognize field codes, you must enter curly brackets by pressing CTRL+F9 on the keyboard. You cannot copy and paste the field-code syntax provided in these procedures directly into your document.

  1. Position your pointer at the beginning of your document, without creating any space between the pointer and any text you may have, and type the following:

    { SEQ variable1 \h \r { SectionPages } } { SEQ variable2 \h \r0 }

 Note   The \r is followed by the number zero, and the \h switch formats the fields as hidden.

  1. Place the following field codes at the beginning of each section after the first section, again without creating any space between the pointer and any text you may have in each section:

    { SEQ variable2 \h \r { ={ SEQ variable1 \c } } } { SEQ variable1 \h \r { ={ SectionPages }+{ SEQ variable2 \c } } }
  2. On the View menu, click Header and Footer.
  3. If you want to insert total page numbers in the footer rather than the header, click the Switch Between Header and Footer button.
  4. To return to header or footer in section 1 of your document, click the Show Previous button until you reach the first page of your document.
  5. In the header or footer where you want total page numbers to display, type the following:

    Page { ={ SEQ variable2 \c }+{ Page } } of { NumPages }
  6. On the Header and Footer toolbar, click Close, and then press ALT+F9 to display your global numbering scheme.
  7. To ensure that your page-numbering scheme is correct, on the View menu, switch between Print Layout and Normal views. This will refresh all field codes.