Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. 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: Creating Compound Characters.

Creating Compound Characters

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 8, 2017)

2

Felipe asked if there is a way to place the ^ sign on top of different letters. Felipe writes about mathematics, and such compound characters are very necessary for the type of writing he does.

Some compound characters are already available within Word. These depend on the typefaces you use in your document; you can easily insert special compound characters by using the Symbol dialog box. Select the character you want, and then click on Insert.

If there is not a ready-made compound character, you can use Word's special fields to synthesize your own. For instance, if you want to place the ^ symbol over the top of the letter N, then you can follow these steps:

  1. Position the insertion point where you want the compound character to appear.
  2. Press Ctrl+F9 to insert field braces.
  3. Type EQ \o(N,).
  4. Position the insertion point between the comma and the closing parenthesis.
  5. Hold down the Alt key as you use the numeric keypad to type 0136. This inserts the ^ character that is most appropriate to creating the compound character.
  6. Delete any extra spaces appearing in the field.
  7. Press Shift+F9 to show the results of the field code.

If you want to change the characters that make up the compound character, change the N in step 3 and use a different character in step 5.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (12076) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Creating Compound Characters.

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

Quickly Moving Text with the Mouse

Drag-and-drop editing is a handy feature when you love to use the mouse. There are two ways you can move text using the ...

Discover More

Debugging a Macro

Part of writing macros is to make sure they work as you expect. This involves a process known as debugging. Here's how ...

Discover More

Words Disappear from the Custom Dictionary

The spell-checking tool built into Word allows you to easily add words to a custom dictionary. What happens, though, if ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Deletions Don't Work as Expected

We all get into habits, including in how we use Word. If you are used to deleting text in a particular way, and all of a ...

Discover More

Smart Quotes are Incorrectly Replaced

Not able to replace smart quotes as you want? Here are some ways that you can be sure that every smart quote is changed, ...

Discover More

Editing a Document with Many Pages

Working with large or long documents in Word can present some interesting challenges. The most common challenge is that ...

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 five minus 1?

2017-04-09 13:52:14

Ted Duke

Someone without a numeric keyboard asked what to do. The characters/numbers on a numeric keypad are equivalent to any numbers on a keyboard or smart phone. The keyboard's key pad is mostly a convenience for accountants and others who prefer to use it.


2017-04-08 16:34:34

Edward Decker

What if I don't have a numeric keypad? How do I (can I?) enter the ASCII code?


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.