The Documents (Advanced) module sets out the skills required to produce more complex documents. It covers areas such as creating long reports, formatting documents so they are attractive and easy to read, structuring information and creating templates, as well as improving productivity.

Employers expect professional workers to be able to produce complex written documents that communicate effectively no matter the topic. Word processing software has become very sophisticated, so it’s vital to have the skills that take advantage of the features available to efficiently produce well-structured and attractive documents.

This module is suitable for a wide range of candidates who want to go beyond basic word processing skills and produce advanced documents. The skills learned are applicable in any work, school, or academic setting. The skills learnt in this module will also improve productivity and collaboration.

Module overview

Category Skill set
  • Text
  • Paragraphs Styles
  • Columns
  • Tables
  • Captions, footnotes and endnotes
  • Citations and bibliography
  • Reference tables and indexes
  • Bookmarks and cross-references
Enhancing productivity
  • Using fields
  • Forms, templates
  • Mail merge
  • Linking, embedding
  • Automation
Collaborative editing
  • Tracking and reviewing Security
Preparing outputs
  • Sections
  • Documents setup
  • Spelling, thesaurus

The main benefits of this module

  • Understand the relevant elements to include in the document and how to apply them
  • Recognise good practice in design and the importance of consistent formatting and styling
  • Know how to create a structure and apply the correct formatting to the elements on the page
  • Understand the importance of referencing and how to include it
  • Know how to enhance documents with automation and dynamic information

The goals of this module

Successful candidates will be able to create long and complex documents that could include advanced elements such as reference tables, graphs, links, or forms. ICDL modules focus as much on skill acquisition as on the understanding of concepts. Having successfully completed this module, candidates will also feel confident managing and collaborating on documents with others. The syllabus is standardised and vendor-independent, so skills are always transferrable.

This module answers key questions such as:

  • What are the different ways of formatting text so that a document is easy to read and navigate?
  • How are tables and columns used to present information? 
  • How is text edited using spell check and thesaurus? 
  • How are references such as captions, footnotes, citations, references, bookmarks, and indexes created? 
  • What productivity gains are available; for instance, fields, forms, mail merge, embedding, and links? 
  • How can document-wide changes be made using features such as search and replace or macros?
  • What are the different ways to output a document; for instance, page layouts, sections or chapters, watermarks? 
  • How can multiple people collaborate effectively on a document, while keeping it protected from unwanted changes? 

Why choose ICDL?

  • Modules cover the key skills and main concepts of marketing and communications roles
  • Certification is internationally recognised
  • ICDL modules are developed with input from computer users, subject matter experts, and practising computer professionals from all over the world
  • Syllabus content reflects day-to-day tasks and responsibilities in this sector
  • Consistency is maintained by our rigorous quality assurance standards

Other ICDL Professional modules supporting Marketing & Communication include:

Digital Marketing — Documents (Advanced) — Presentation (Advanced)

Modules can be combined in any way to create a unique ICDL Profile.


The detailed syllabus for the Advanced Word Processing module is publicly available, so that there is complete clarity about what is covered.

The syllabus document, which sets out the specific skills and knowledge that you will learn and against which you will be certified, can be downloaded here.

Sample tests

Do you want to better understand the Advanced Word Processing module and how we test skills and knowledge?

Try out the Advanced Word Processing sample tests here to get a feel for the coverage of the module, or practice before your certification test.

ICDL Professional

Digital skills for occupational effectiveness

ICDL Professional is designed to meet the needs of modern professionals in a range of sectors and develops an advanced level of skills for those with technology reliant roles. From the use of business applications to the fundamentals of advanced technologies, these skills allow them to manage different types of workload as well as collaborate with technical teams.

ICDL Professional contains a range of modules which can be combined in any way to create a unique ICDL Profile. The syllabus content of each module is supported by learning materials that mirror day-to-day tasks and responsibilities typical of a role in the sector or industry.

The modules in ICDL Professional are:


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