How to Change Encoding in Word 2007

Written by daniel foster
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How to Change Encoding in Word 2007
Changing the encoding might be necessary to read documents written in a foreign language. (world flags image by Jeffrey Zalesny from

Microsoft Word 2007 can display documents in any language, but only if you know how to change the encoding settings. Because many foreign languages use a different set of characters than English, the default encoding settings in Word may garble foreign language text. Select a new encoding for the document to solve this problem.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Click the "Microsoft Office" button in the upper-left corner of the screen. Select "Word Options" and then click "Advanced."

  2. 2

    Check the "Confirm file format conversion on open" check box. This configures the settings so that Word 2007 asks you to set an encoding standard every time you open a document.

  3. 3

    Close the Word document. Open it again. The "Convert File" dialogue box will appear. Choose "Encoded Text" to open the "File Conversion" dialogue box. Select a new encoding for the file.

Tips and warnings

  • Select "Preview" to see how an encoding change will affect your document.
  • You may need to change the font for the document to display properly.
  • Save files in Unicode, a universal encoding setting, for better language compatibility on other computers.

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