Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Quickly Increasing Point Size.

Quickly Increasing Point Size

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated February 19, 2022)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021


Word provides a way to quickly increase the point size of a selection. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Select the text whose point size you want to increase.
  2. Press Ctrl+].

Every time you press Ctrl+], the point size of the selection will increase by one point. Decrease the size by pressing Ctrl+[. If you want more precise control over the point size (for instance, making something 11.5 points), you must use the Font dialog box; just press Ctrl+D.

You can also use Ctrl+Shift+> to increase the size by two points every time. Note that it will only increase to even numbers, which means it will increase to an even number if your current font size is odd before increasing by two points. For example, if your font size is set to 11 and you press Ctrl+Shift+>, then it will increase to 12 first and then to 14, 16, 18, etc. Likewise, pressing Ctrl+Shift+< will decrease the size. (The even font sizes apply only in the range of 12-28 points. Outside of that range you'll get what may seem a capricious selection of font sizes such as 36, 48, 72, 80. Test out the shortcut, and you'll get a quick feel for the font sizes.)

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10027) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Quickly Increasing Point Size.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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