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I have a friend who wants to learn how to remove replace all acronyms with their proper names in reports she compiles. She showed me a list she has written out and it's enormous.

I would think there must be some way she could use a regex-driven program that would find every instance of ESA (for example) and replace it with Endangered Species Act.

I would hate to have to code something, if it already exists somewhere out there; preferably one that stores all of them.

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What exactly is a "proper name" if a word is an acronym for another word using either word is proper. The best way would be to use the replace all feature. – Ramhound Jan 23 '13 at 20:53
Work smarter not harder, Ramhound Knows best! – Ryan M Jan 23 '13 at 21:12
Depends on what program your using, but if it is word then a simple VB program wouldn't be hard to write at all. Outside of that though, I'm afraid that Ramhound's answer is the only 'easy' way your going to be able to do this without learning anything. – Lee Harrison Jan 23 '13 at 22:08
what type of documents? – Keltari Jan 24 '13 at 13:09
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Another option is to use the Autocorrect feature found in Word. You would have to edit the word list to add the acronyms and what to replace them with. This is provided she is using Word to comopose her reports. This way, anytime she types the acronym, it is automatically replaced with the spelled out terms.

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I would go this route and also add them to the autocorrect list for future use so I wouldn't have to do it again. – BigHomie Jan 24 '13 at 13:51
This is the perfect solution, by using what's already there. – Cayetano Gonçalves Jan 30 '13 at 22:32

VBA Find & Replace has worked for me in the past. It can use a predefined list created in Word or Excel.

VBA Find and Replace© provides a method for finding and replacing text anywhere in a document (or collection of documents) using single user defined "find" and "replace" variable pairs, or a user defined list of "find" and "replace" pairs. It also provides a method to find text and replace found text with a user defined "AutoText" or "Building Block" entry.

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