How to put math symbols and equations in Word documents

How to put math symbols and equations in Word documents

When it comes to performing calculations and mathematical operations, Office has Excel, a highly accurate spreadsheet system. But it may happen that while working with the word processor we need to use a mathematical symbol or reflect an equation, and that is when doubts arise about how to do this. So that you don't have to slow down your work pace, we explain how to enter mathematical symbols in Word.

Many mathematical and scientific symbols do not appear on the keyboard, but that does not mean that they are not at our disposal. Pay attention because we are going to reveal all the tricks so that you can include all types of mathematical formulas in a text document quickly and easily.

Importance of mathematical symbols in a Word document

Importance of mathematical symbols in a Word document

As a user of the Office word processor, it is essential that you know add special characters in a Word document. Because you may need to resort to them on more than one occasion.

Knowing this functionality will help you in many ways:

  • Clarity and precision. These symbols allow mathematical concepts to be represented clearly and precisely, without ambiguity. Therefore, you need to know how to use them well to express formulas and equations in your documents.
  • Effective communication. If you are creating academic or professional documents, symbols will help you communicate complex ideas more efficiently. This facilitates the transmission of information and makes it easier to understand.
  • Universal standard. Mathematical symbols are the same all over the world. If you use them well, you ensure that your document can be understood by a global audience.
  • Professionalism and credibility. Applying mathematical symbols well in Word projects an image of professionalism and academic rigor. Something especially important if you are working on a report or preparing a thesis.

What uses can we give to mathematical symbols in Word?

What uses can we give to mathematical symbols in Word?

These types of special characters can have many different uses:

Formulas and equations

Mathematical symbols are used to write formulas and equations in documents as different from each other as with educational content, research, academic publication or a financial report.

graphs and diagrams

Symbols can serve as a basis for creating graphs and diagrams such as Venn diagrams, which require mathematical notation. If we want this type of graphs to be accurate, we must be able to provide an exact formula, with the well placed symbols.

Statistics and data analysis

Documents containing data analysis and statistical results also require the inclusion of mathematical symbols. Because Only in this way is it possible to know how certain results have been reached.

Problems and exercises

The teachers and creators of educational material must have among their basic competencies know how to use mathematical symbols in Word, to be able to create problems and exercises for students.

Technical, scientific documents and manuals

Any writer who prepares technical manuals, documents related to engineering or scientific publications will have to use mathematical symbols on more than one occasion to transmit information accurately.

Scripts and algorithms

To create a document that describes scripts or algorithms, mathematical symbols are absolutely essential, because they are the only way to express logical and mathematical operations clearly and so that they are understandable.

How to enter mathematical symbols in Word?

How to enter mathematical symbols in Word?

Despite being an office tool focused on texts, Word offers us a wide variety of tools so that we can reflect different mathematical formulas and equations in our documents. What we will not be able to do in any case is solve them with this program, for that we will have to resort to Excel.

Loose symbols

If all you need is to introduce loose mathematical symbols such as infinity, or the typical “greater than” or “less than” into your text, then you can do it very simply and quickly:

  • Open the Word document you want to work with.
  • At the top of the menu click on the option "Insert".
  • Look for the option of “Symbols” > "More symbols."

This will open a pop-up window with a large number of symbols, what you have to do is select the one you are interested in and it will appear in the place in the text where you left the cursor stopped.


The equations have a very complex formulation that may seem impossible to reflect with Word, but it's not like that. Because this tool has a functionality that includes a series of predefined equations.

To insert them follow these steps:

  • Open the Word document you want to work with and place the cursor where you want the equation to appear.
  • At the top of the menu go to the tab "Insert".
  • Look for the option of "Equation" (it appears next to the “Symbol” that we have seen before).

This time the pop-up window will show you a series of predefined equations. If you are lucky and the one you are looking for is available, just click on it to appear in the document. Afterwards, you can modify it according to what you need.

Create equations from scratch

If none of the predefined equations in Word can serve what you need, you have the possibility of creating your formula from scratch.

Go back to the section "Equation" and click on the option “Write your equation here”, this will open a tab with tools to create the formula. You have at your disposal fractions, indices, radicals, integrals, large operators, brackets, functions, accent, limits and logarithms and operators. By clicking on each of these options, new alternatives will be displayed to carry out the formulation. This way you can create completely custom equations.

Draw an equation

Another alternative is to draw the equation directly. Again, go to the tab "Insert" and click "Equation" To access the options menu, choose then “Equation pen input.”

A window appears where you can handwrite the equation with the mouse cursor. In the Preview bar you can see how the formula is looking and how it will appear in the document. When you finish, click on "Insert" and you have it ready.

As you have seen, there are many ways to enter mathematical symbols in Word, so you no longer have an excuse for your documents not to have the highest quality and precision.

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