Figure & Table Lists | Word Instructions, Template & Examples

A list of figures and tables compiles all of the figures and tables that you used in your thesis or dissertation, along with their corresponding page numbers. These lists give your reader an overview of how you have used figures and tables in your document.

While these lists are often not required, you may want to include one as a way to stay organized if you are using several figures and tables in your paper. Your educational institution may require one, so be sure to check their guidelines. Ultimately, if you do choose to add one, it should go directly after your table of contents.

You can download our Microsoft Word template below to help you get started.

Download Word doc

How to create a list of figures and tables in Word

The first step to creating your list of figures and tables is to ensure that each of your figures and tables has a caption. This way, Microsoft Word will be able to find each one and compile them in your list automatically.

To do this, follow these steps:

    1. Navigate to the References tab, and click “Insert Caption,” which you can find in the Captions group.
    2. Give your caption a name. In the Label list, you can select the label that best describes your figure or table, or make your own by selecting “New Label.”

Add captions to list of tables and figures

Next, you can insert the list of tables and figures directly by clicking “Insert Table of Figures,” which can be found to the right of the “Insert Caption” button. Be careful here—the list will only include items that you have marked using the “Insert Caption” tool!

You can choose the formatting and layout within this menu as well, as you can see below.

Add list of tables and figures

Tip
If you add, edit, delete, or move any of your captions, be sure to click on “Update Table,” located right underneath “Insert Table of Figures,” to ensure everything is up to date.

There are a few things to remember as you go:

  • Figures and tables always need to be numbered, with clear titles.
  • If a figure or table is taken from or based on another source, be sure to cite your sources.
    A note on APA Style
    Since it isn’t a mandatory section, the APA handbook doesn’t have guidelines for a list of tables and figures. But if you need help figuring out formatting for the figures and tables themselves, there are APA-specific instructions.

    Example of a list of tables and figures

    list of tables and figures example

    Additional lists to consider

    In addition to your list of tables and figures, there are a few other lists to consider for your thesis or dissertation. They can be placed in the following order:

    Frequently asked questions about the list of tables and figures

    Where does your list of figures and tables go?

    Your list of tables and figures should go directly after your table of contents in your thesis or dissertation.

    Is a list of figures and tables mandatory?

    Lists of figures and tables are often not required, and aren’t particularly common. They specifically aren’t required for APA-Style, though you should be careful to follow their other guidelines for figures and tables.

    If you have many figures and tables in your thesis or dissertation, include one may help you stay organized. Your educational institution may require them, so be sure to check their guidelines.

    Copyright information can usually be found wherever the table or figure was published. For example, for a diagram in a journal article, look on the journal’s website or the database where you found the article. Images found on sites like Flickr are listed with clear copyright information.

    If you find that permission is required to reproduce the material, be sure to contact the author or publisher and ask for it.

    What is a list of figures and tables?

    A list of figures and tables compiles all of the figures and tables that you used in your thesis or dissertation and displays them with the page number where they can be found.

    Should I include lists of my tables and figures in an APA paper?

    APA doesn’t require you to include a list of tables or a list of figures. However, it is advisable to do so if your text is long enough to feature a table of contents and it includes a lot of tables and/or figures.

    A list of tables and list of figures appear (in that order) after your table of contents, and are presented in a similar way.

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    Sarah Vinz

    Sarah's academic background includes a Master of Arts in English, a Master of International Affairs degree, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. She loves the challenge of finding the perfect formulation or wording and derives much satisfaction from helping students take their academic writing up a notch.

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