I work in the technology training department at a local university where we are constantly looking for ways to help professors, staff, and administration with technology driven products. This includes MS Office 2007. We’re in the middle of transitioning to the new version of the software and so many people on the campus are unhappy about it. I guess for some, change is never good. Personally I like the new version of MS Office 2007. It works well with my visual way of learning.
To help others that don’t feel the same, I am always on the look out for resources to help them through the change. One of the best things I think I’ve ever found, and that Microsoft ever created, was the “Interactive Guide” feature. This helpful resource is a must for anyone who has been working on MS Office 2003 or earlier and is now making the upgrade to MS Office 2007. (please note: if you are completely new to the world of computers and are starting out on MS Office 2007, this won’t be overly helpful because you need to know where to find things in MS Office 2003 which you may have never used.)
So why is this Interactive Guide so helpful?
When you start the guide you are presented with a program in MS Office 2003 the way you may be use to seeing it. Nothing will take place until you “interact” with your screen. Once you do, the guide will help you find the feature you are looking for in MS Office 2007. So for example, you want to bold something. One way to find the bold feature in MS Office 2003 was to go to the “Format” menu, select “Font’ and then select “Bold” under “Font Style.” Once you choose the “bold” feature in MS Office 2003, the interactive guide takes over and does a mini-presentation for you to show you where that feature can now be found in MS Office 2007. It only takes a few seconds and can be repeated over and over again until you feel comfortable performing the task. Plus you can look for help with another feature simply by clicking any where on your screen – the interactive guide will then go back to MS Office 2003 to let you try again.
How much does utilizing the Interactive Guide cost?
The Interactive Guide is a completely free feature offered by Microsoft.
How do I access it?
There are two ways.
First, if you feel it is something you are only going to do every once in a while and don’t want to take the time to download it, or if you are at someone else computer and can’t access what you’ve downloaded to your own, simply:
Open a software program in MS Office 2007
Select the help feature which can be found as a question (?) mark is the top right hand corner of the software program.
Type in “Interactive Guide” in the search box.
Select the Interactive Guide option
Select “Start the Guide”
Perform a task in MS Office 2003 and let the guide show you how to do it in MS Office 2007.
Alternative to access this feature on a regular basis:
If you think you are going to use this feature often, then you may want to consider downloading it. Doing so will place a new tab in the software called, “Getting Started,” which will include the Interactive Guide, along with other helpful resources such as videos, online communities, and more. We’ll explore that a little further in future articles.
For now, if you’d like to download the “Getting Started” tab to have access to the Interactive Guide, use the direct links under the “links” section on this page to download the feature.
Please note that you have to perform the download for each program that you use ex. Word, Excel, PowerPoint.