Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007 and 2010. 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 Changing Font Sizes.

Quickly Changing Font Sizes

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated October 19, 2015)

6

Word allows you a great deal of control over the size of the font used in your documents. If you want to change font sizes quickly, you can follow these steps:

  1. Select the text whose font size you want to change.
  2. Press Ctrl+> to increase the size of the font.
  3. Press Ctrl+< to decrease the size of the font.

(Remember that to access the < or > keys, you must hold down the Shift key. Thus, some people may refer to these shortcuts as Shift+Ctrl+> and Shift+Ctrl+<. This notation is redundant, however.)

Exactly how much the font size is increased or decreased depends. At smaller point sizes (12 or under), the point size is changed by a single point. Between 12 and 72 points, you are actually stepping through the point sizes available in the Font group of the Home tab on the ribbon (12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 26, 28, 36, 48, and 72). Thereafter, the font size is changed by increments of ten points. You can use this method to reduce a point size to a single point or to as large as 1638 points.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (11076) applies to Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Quickly Changing Font Sizes.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Auto Creation of an Acronym List

If you use a lot of acronyms in your documents, you may want a quick way to compile those acronyms and their definitions into ...

Discover More

Conditionally Formatting Non-Integers

The conditional formatting capabilities of Excel are very helpful when you want to call attention to different values ...

Discover More

Easily Adding a Graphic to a Document

Need to spice up your document with a graphic? Here's the quickest way we've found to get those graphics where you want them.

Discover More

Learning Made Easy! Quickly teach yourself how to format, publish, and share your content using Word 2013. With Step by Step, you set the pace, building and practicing the skills you need, just when you need them! Check out Microsoft Word 2013 Step by Step today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Searching for Text that Does Not Have a Certain Format

You can easily use Find and Replace to find text that has a particular format to it. Most people don't know you can use the ...

Discover More

Changing the Height of a Font

Scaling the width of a font is easy to do with Word's formatting capabilities. Scaling the height of the fonts is not so ...

Discover More

Copying Character Formatting

If you are applying character formatting directly to text rather than using a character style you can copy it from one place ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 2 + 1?

2016-10-19 22:08:11

Ruve Campbell

How do I decrease my font size to 18?


2015-04-27 18:13:25

Sueze Morris

Concur with the others - Ctrl [ and Ctrl ] works for me too.


2015-04-26 08:10:09

Natalie

I also agree with Bryan. This is a shortcut that I use tirelessly and much easier to just use CTRL + [ or CTRL + ].


2015-04-24 17:25:08

Barbara Metz

Doesn't seem to work with Windows for Mac.


2015-04-24 11:10:01

Maggie

Ditto to what Bryan said. I find this easier (no having to hold down a Shift key), and more granular; ergo, more helpful.


2013-06-04 07:19:30

Bryan

If you just want to increase/decrease by one point at a time no matter what the starting font, you can use CTRL + ] and CTRL + [, respectively.


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.