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Mail Merge


To complete this exercise you will need to download two files:

Right-click on the links below and select "Save Target As" -
then save both files to your C:/My Documents Directory
File 1
Access database file containing names and addresses msaccess01.mdb
File 2
Letter (MS Word 97 document)



Once you have downloaded these files to your hard disk proceed with the steps below.


Step 1

Open the Word Document "wordex22.doc". You will see a letter about selection for Australian Underwater Chess Championships.

Your task is to insert mail merge fields for name and address of people to whom the letter is to be sent. Here;s how you do that.

Step 2

Select the Mail Merge command from the Tools menu in MS Word. This will open Word's Mail Merge Helper.

Next, click on the button labelled Create. You will see there are four possible mail merge documents that you can create.

Form Letters (for letters or any document to be generated in multiple copies)
Mailing Labels (for printing adhesive labels on your printer)
Envelopes (for printing directly on envelopes)
Catalog (for generating a mailing list)

For this exercise you should select Form Letter.

Word will now display a dialog box as below.

For this exercise you should click the Active Window button. The other option creates a new blank document.


Step 3

The next step is to find the file that has all the names and addresses you need. That's the other file you downloaded (msaccess01.mdb).

Click on the Get Data button. Word will allow you to open an existing data source, or create a new one.

Word can read many types of data documents for example:

Word tables

Excel worksheets

Access database tables

Access database queries

Delimited text files

From the Get Data drop-down menu, select Open Data Source to begin the process of selecting the Access database file msaccess01.mdb.


Now it is very important for you to understand that you will NOT be able to see the file you need UNLESS you select "MS Access Databases (*.mdb)" in the "Files of Type" box as in illustration below.

Once you have navigated to the folder that contains the file access01.mdb and selected it, Word will ask which MS Access table has the data your require. In this exercise there is only one table to select and it is called StudentData. Double click on StudentData to select.

Word will now prompt you to return to your main document so that it can be formatted to contain data. Click on Edit Main Document.

Step 4

Once your data source has been selected or created, the next step is to insert merge fields into your document so that the letter can be printed with names and addresses.

Merge fields can be inserted at any point in your main document, and can be formatted with fonts and styles just like normal text.

For this exercise you will insert merge fields for the following:

  • First
  • Surname
  • Street
  • City
  • State
  • Postcode

When you return to your document you will now find a Mail Merge toolbar. Click on the button "Insert Merge Field" and you should see something like the illustration below.

It is now a case of selecting merge fields to be inserted into your document.

You must realise that Merge Fields will be inserted where your mouse cursor lies.

Make sure you add a "First" field just after "Dear" in your letter.

That's all folks!


Copyright Leo Isaac 2006 -2007

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