I could temporarily fix the problem by deleting normal.dotm (after closing all Word and Outlook windows) since Word would recreate the file on the next opening - but that was only a temporary fix. After looking through some things and this page:
I felt that it was a Skype or other add-in that was causing the error. I found this - which I was only able to delete when logged in as admin (not the user even though she was a local admin on that computer).
Unchecking Skype4Word seems to have fixed the problem.