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Using AutoShapes

AutoShapes are pre-defined drawing objects such as boxes, arrows, etc which you can add text to in order to quickly create graphics.  If you have the Drawing Toolbar displayed you will see a button labelled AutoShapes, if you click this you will see a menu containing the various types of AutoShapes available within Word:

(To display the Drawing Toolbar click on the View drop-down menu and then select Toolbars and then Drawing).

Select the type of shape you would like and you will notice your mouse pointer change to a small dark cross.  Click your mouse on your page where you want to place the shape and keep your left mouse button held down while dragging it out to size.  When you are happy with the shape you can release your left mouse button and the shape will be positioned.  To change the size of an AutoShape you can click on it once to display the 'handles' around the shape and then drag the handles to resize the shape.

There are a couple of extra techniques you can use when dragging out an autoshape to help you draw it accurately:

Holding down SHIFT while dragging out an autoshape keeps its proportions exactly the same, this will help you draw a perfect circle, hexagon, etc.

Holding down CTRL while dragging out an autoshape allows you to drag it from the centre outwards, this can be helpful if you find it confusing having to drag out an imaginary box to produce a circle.

Holding down CTRL and SHIFT together while dragging out an autoshape allows you to draw it from the center AND keep the proportions the same, great for drawing circles!

When you have created an AutoShape you can click your right mouse button over it and select Add Text from the menu that appears to add text to the shape.

Some shapes, such as arrows, have special handles within them that you can use to adjust the proportions within the shape, e.g. the size of the arrowhead or the width of the stem.

If you click and drag the yellow diamond you can change the design of the arrow.

AutoShapes can be rotated using Word's rotate tool and can be used with connectors to make complicated organisation and flow charts.