You can create a table of contents in Microsoft Word where its page numbers show its position in the document.
For example, if there is a title page (or cover page) with page number 1 before the table of contents, then the table of contents will have page numbers 2 onwards.
If there are two pages before the table of contents (for example, a title page with page number 1, abstract page with page number 2), then the table of contents will start with page number 3.
Figure 1 shows a table of contents where the page number starts at 2 with the title page before it having a page number of 1.
You can create and update the table of contents anytime. To have entries in the table of contents, each heading needs to have a Microsoft Word Outline Level according to the hierarchy. For example, set outline levels as follows:
You can add, change or delete your headings at anytime.
Figure 2 instructions (if required) are:
A dialog box with Table of Contents options will appear (see Figure 3). You can choose your table of contents heading ("Contents" or "Table of Contents') here.
Figure 3 instructions (if required) are:
The heading is the only difference between the two options.
Note: You may want to format your table of contents differently, for example, a different font.
If the last thing you do before you submit your paper is to create a table of contents, then you do not need to update the table of contents.
However, most people (myself included) create a table of contents during the writing process, and update the table of contents periodically.
You must update your table of contents whenever you add, change or delete a heading.
Even if you do not add, delete, or change a heading, you should update your table of contents (as shown in Figure 4).
Because adding, changing, or deleting text may change the page numbers.
Even changing one word could result in a change of page numbers, for example, adding a word could force a heading or subheading onto a different page.
Make sure to update the table of contents just before you finish your document.
Figure 4 instructions (if required) are:
Your table of contents will be updated.
If your Word document is to be viewed only online, you can have hyperlinks and no page numbers in your table of contents. All you have to do is uncheck a box.
Figure 5 instructions (if required) are:
A dialog box with Table of Contents options will appear (see Figure 6).
Figure 6 instructions (if required) is:
Figure 7 instructions (if required) are:
Your table of contents will have hyperlinks only to take you to locations in the document (see Figure 8).
To create a table of contents with page numbers continuing from any previous pages, you should (as shown above):
See this Microsoft page (opens new window) for more information about creating a table of contents.