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Drafting IEC publications



Creating captions for figures and tables

To create a caption (number + title) for a figure or a table, we recommend you use MS Word's Caption feature. This feature automatically attributes sequential numbers to figures and tables, which will enable you to make use of Word's cross-referencing feature.


Automatic numbering also ensures that figure and table numbers can be updated automatically whenever a table or figure is inserted or deleted, or the order is rearranged.


This automation reduces the time spent on maintaining figure & table numbers and the corresponding cross-references as well as the potential for errors.


Note: This functionality will only insert a caption, not format it and make it appear in the table of contents. To ensure all your figures and tables are listed in the table of contents, apply the style FIGURE-title or TABLE-title from the IEC template to each caption.


Inserting a figure or table caption

Go to References > Insert caption.


In the Caption window that opens:


1) Enter the title of the table / figure


2) Select the label (Figure / Table / customised label - if you are working in a language version other than English, please see Using customised caption labels below)


3) If the cursor is currently placed in the table or figure, you can choose whether to place the caption above or below it (choose above for tables, below for figures)


When you are done, click OK.


caption window



Using customised caption labels

In the Caption window, you can create customised labels by clicking on New Label. If your version of Word is in a language other than English, we recommend you create the labels Figure and Table.


The New Label option can also be used to create labels for figures and tables in the annex. For instance, creating a new label Figure A. allows you to create figure captions in Annex A (Figure A.1, Figure A.2 etc.).


Important: A new label is saved ONLY on the computer where it was created (in Word's local Normal template). It cannot be exchanged with the document. This means that everyone who wants to use the label needs to re-create it on their local computer. Therefore the decision to use customised labels should be taken on the workgroup level and well communicated to everyone involved.


Updating caption numbers

Caption numbers are fields that update automatically. However, automatically does not mean spontaneously - you decide when you want fields to update.

  • To update a field, select it and press [F9]
  • To update all fields in a document, select the entire document [Ctrl + A] and press [F9]


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