Two Pages on One Sheet

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How to print two pages on one sheet of paper, with page numbering

Word 2000 and above offer two built-in ways to print two pages on one sheet of paper (for more detailed information on this, see “How can I print two pages on one sheet of paper?”):

  • In the Print dialog, the Zoom: Pages per sheet setting allows you to print up to 16 pages on a single sheet. Note that this option reduces full-size pages to fractional size; this is much more effective with European A sizes (which have the same aspect ratio) than with US Letter.

  • In the Page Setup dialog, under “Multiple pages” (on the Margins tab in Word 2002 and above) there is a “2 pages per sheet” option that allows you to actually create a document this way. The pages print the size you create them (so your editing view is WYSIWYG), and you can apply page numbering, page borders, headers, footers, and any other page-level formatting to these half-size pages just as you would to a full-size page.

For previous versions, however, you'll have to simulate this using columns, tables, or text boxes. To put more than one page number on a single page, you'll need to use a calculated field, placing the respective page numbers in the header or footer using either a table or tabs for alignment. Here's how to format the page numbers assuming you're using two columns to print two “pages” on a page and want the pages to be numbered 1 and 2, 3 and 4, etc.:

  1. View | Header and Footer, which will open the header for editing and display the Header and Footer toolbar. If your page numbers are to be in the footer, click on the Switch Between Header and Footer button on the toolbar. Then insert fields as follows:

  2. For the smaller number, on the left, use Ctrl+F9 to insert field braces. Inside the braces, click on the Insert Page Number button on the Header and Footer toolbar to insert a { PAGE } field. Then add text so that your field looks like this:

{ = { PAGE } * 2 - 1 }

  1. For the larger number, on the right, following the same procedure, format a field to look like this:

{ = { PAGE } * 2 }

If you have more than two columns, you'll have to work out the math.

If you want to print a booklet, with pages set up for binding, see the article on Booklet printing or the “Creating a booklet” section of “How can I print two pages on one sheet of paper?”

This article copyright © 2009 by Suzanne S. Barnhill.