Assigning Shortcut Keys to Symbols in Microsoft Word

By Deborah Savadra

Inserting symbols like paragraph (∂), section (ß) or degree (∞) doesn’t have to involve digging through the Insert Symbols dialog box every time. Instead, make a shortcut key so you can insert the symbol without ever taking your hands off the keyboard.

Any Symbol Can Have a Shortcut Key

Normally, inserting symbols into your text in Microsoft Word takes several clicks: Insert tab, Symbol, More Symbols, and then scrolling through a seemingly endless list of characters  (unless you get lucky and see the symbol you’re looking for in the Recently Used Symbols list in the bottom half of the Symbols tab or on the Special Characters tab of the Symbol dialog box).

Fortunately, any symbol can have a shortcut key assigned to it, so you never have to reach for the mouse to insert a symbol. (A shortcut key is a combination of Alt, Ctrl and/or Shift pressed simultaneously with a letter.)

How to Assign a Shortcut Key

Once you find your symbol in the list, click on it and check out the bottom of the dialog box. There may already be a shortcut key assigned to it. If that one doesn’t suit you, click the Shortcut Key button in the bottom left of the dialog box to assign another…

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