How to convert a Word table into an Access database

Article contributed by Beth Melton

There are a couple of methods you can use for this. Using Excel, if you If you have it, is the easiest way, and you tend to get fewer import errors in Access if you use Excel. However, if you don't have Excel, you can convert your Word table into tab-delimited format, which you can import directly into Access. This is still pretty easy, although it does involve a few additional steps.

Whichever method you use, make sure the first row of your table contains field names that uniquely describe the information in each column. If it doesn’t, then place your cursor in the first row, go to Table/Insert Rows and add your field names.

Using Excel to transfer data between Word and Access:


Copy and Paste the table onto an Excel worksheet


Open your Access database (create a new one if need be)


Select the cells in Excel and copy them


Switch to the Access database, display the Tables object list and click the Paste command


You will receive a message: Does the first row of your data contain column headings?. Answer Yes and your Access table is created


Right-click the table, select Rename and change the name of the table

Tip for power users: if you know how to drag and drop via the Windows Taskbar, the procedure is even easier.


Select the Word table


Drag and drop it into Excel


Drag and drop it onto the Tables object list in Access

Using Word Only


Select the Word table and go to Table/Convert Table to Text


Use the Separate the Text using Tabs option


Go to File/Save As and change the Save as Type to Text only. Save and close the file.


Open your Access database (create a new one if needed)


Right-click an empty area of the Tables Object list and select Import


Change the Files of Type to Text Files


Select your text file you saved earlier and work through the Import Text Wizard

Note that once you have your table in Access, you need to go to the Table design and review the data types and field sizes assigned and make the necessary changes.

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