Inclusivity settings in Microsoft Word

Screenshot of Inclusiveness settings in Word
Inclusiveness settings in Word for Microsoft 365

Here’s an interesting little something that I learned on Twitter a few weeks ago: within the grammar checker settings in Microsoft Word (both native Windows application and online version) there is a section on inclusiveness that checks your writing for

  • Ethnic slurs
  • Gender bias
  • Gender-specific language

The Windows application also checks for

  • Age bias
  • Cultural bias
  • Racial bias
  • Sexual orientation bias

Why are these not switched on by default? Here’s how to switch these on.

Word for Microsoft 365

Here is how to switch on these in Word for Microsoft 365 on Windows 10.

  1. Open Word for Microsoft 365 and create a blank document or open an existing document. This won’t work without an open document.
  2. Click on the Review tab.
  3. In the Proofing section, click on Editor.
  4. A new sidebar will open on the right-hand side. In this sidebar, click on the Settings cog.
  5. A new dialog window called Word Options will open, focused on the Proofing options. Locate the section called “When correcting spelling and grammar in Word” and click on the button marked “Settings…” against “Writing Style”
  6. Another dialog box will open called “Grammar Settings“. Now scroll down until you find the “Inclusiveness” options.
  7. Check the options you wish to switch on.
  8. Click OK, then click OK, then close the Editor sidebar.

Word online

  1. Go to Word Online. Create a new blank document or open an existing document. This won’t work without an open document.
  2. Click on the Review tab.
  3. Click on Editor > Editor Settings.
  4. A dialog box will open called “Editor Settings”. Scroll down to the “Inclusiveness” section.
  5. Check the options you wish to switch on.
  6. Click OK.

Published by

Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 48 years old, 6′ 4″, father of 3 boys (including twins). Enneagram type FOUR and introvert, I am a non-stipendiary priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir, play guitar, write, draw and laugh… a lot. Scrum master at Vision Ltd, Dundee. Latterly, web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and former warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall.

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