Insert symbols

Sometimes you need a character that’s not on your keyboard, like a foreign currency symbol, a trademark (™), or a fraction like 1/3. For a few symbols you can use the AutoCorrect feature to type them. For all others, go to Insert > Symbol.

AutoCorrect converts a series of keystrokes to symbols. Here are a few of the most commonly used ones.


To insert







Tip    Click File > Options > Proofing > AutoCorrect Options and scroll down the list on the AutoCorrect tab to see other keystrokes that convert to symbols. You can also create your own AutoCorrect character on the AutoCorrect tab by typing a keystroke in the Replace box, and typing what you want the keystroke to replace in the With box.

  1. To insert other symbols, click Insert > Symbol.

Symbol command on the Insert tab

The Symbol gallery opens, which contains among other symbols, additional foreign currency symbols.

  1. Select a symbol to insert it.

  2. To see additional symbols, click More Symbols at the bottom of the gallery.

The Symbol box opens.

The Symbol box in Word

  1. Scroll through the list of characters to see all the symbols available in your current font (normal text) in the Font box. Notice that as you scroll the label in the Subset box changes. If you want to skip directly to the not-equal-to sign, for example, select Mathematical Operators in the Subset box.

Subset box in the Symbol box

Notes    If you do not see the Subset box, look in the lower right corner of the Symbol box. In the from list, select Unicode (hex).

Unicode (hex) selected in the Symbol box

  1. If you don’t see what you want, select a different font in the Font box.

  2. When you see a symbol you want, click Insert > Close. If you don’t want to insert a symbol, click Cancel.

Tip    For text that works like pictures, switch to one of the Wingding fonts in the Font box.


Some fractions (1/4, 1/2, and 3/4) automatically switch to a fraction character when you type them (¼, ½, ¾). But others do not (1/3, 2/3, 1/5, etc.).

  1. To switch to a fraction character, click Insert > Symbols > More Symbols.

  2. In the Subset box, click Number Forms and select a fraction.

  3. Click Insert > Close.


    • To find additional mathematical symbols, click AutoCorrect at the bottom of the Symbol box. Click the Math AutoCorrect tab to see a list of keyboard shortcuts you can type into your document to insert math symbols. Be sure to select the Replace text as you type check box. Depending on where you are in the document you may need to select the option Use Math AutoCorrect rules outside of math region.

Applies To: Excel 2013, Publisher 2013, Word 2013, OneNote 2013, PowerPoint 2013, Visio 2016 Preview

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