Sometimes you may want to insert the degree symbol in Microsoft Word to show temperature readings rather than typing the word “degrees.” However, this may not be as easy as it sounds because you won’t find the degree symbol on your keyboard.
You could simply copy it from a webpage and paste it wherever you want – in our case in Word. However, it’s much easier to use your keyboard. There are actually several great ways to do this.
1. Use the Keyboard Shortcut
Shortcut keys are usually the easiest method for inserting most symbols. The only problem is you’ll need to remember some short codes. You can always keep a Notepad document on your desktop for easy reference. Fortunately, with this method, you just need to hit a combination of keys to insert the degree sign anywhere in a Word document.
The bad thing about this method is that it may not work for you if your laptop keyboard doesn’t have a number pad. Desktop models come equipped with number pads, but most laptops forgo the number pad due to space limitations.
To insert the degree sign, simply follow these two steps:
1. Select where you want to insert the degree symbol in Microsoft Word.
2. While holding down the Alt key, use the keypad to type “0176.” Release the Alt key, and the degree sign will appear.
Note: for this method to work, the Num Lock on your keyboard MUST be turned to OFF. If it’s ON, the keyboard will not accept numerical input.
If you’d like to know how to insert other symbols using this method, Alt Codes lists most every symbol code.
2. Use the Symbol Menu in Word
Microsoft Word and Libre Office come with a built-in special characters menu that you can use to insert the degree sign. To access the symbols menu in Word, simply follow the steps below:
1. Select the “Insert” tab and navigate to the “Symbols” section towards the far-right end of the screen. Click the “Symbols” icon, and you should see a list of the most common or recently used symbols.
2. Click the “More Symbols” option and a rectangular grid with a full list of many different symbols that you can use will open. Locate the degree sign and click on it. You’ll also be able to see a description of the degree symbol you’ve highlighted just above the “AutoCorrect” button.
3. Move the cursor to where you want to insert the degree sign in the Word document, then click the “Insert” button in the characters menu. Now every time you open the Symbols menu, you should see the degree sign in the list of the recently-used symbols. This method can save you time, as you’ll never have to repeat this process again.
3. Use Character Map
To use this method, follow the steps below. I used Windows 10, but it can also work on Windows 7 and Windows 8.
1. Open your Start menu and type “Character Map” in the search box. Hit Enter. This searches your computer for the Character Map program.
2. Double-click the Character Map desktop app that will populate. Doing so will open the program. Here you’ll find a list of numerous symbols and characters.
3. At the bottom of the program, you should see the “Advanced view” box. Click to check it. Skip this step if it’s already checked. The essence of checking the box is to be able to easily find the degree sign from a list of over one-hundred symbols.
4. Now it’ll be easy to locate the degree sign. Type “degree sign” in the search box as illustrated below, then click the search button, and all the other symbols will clear, leaving behind only the degree sign.
5. Double-click the degree sign, then click “Copy.” Go to the Word document where you want to insert it and click Ctrl + V to paste it. You can use the same procedure to insert any other special character into Word or a webpage.
Inserting a degree symbol in Microsoft Word only takes seconds once you know how to do it. No matter which method you prefer, you can finally skip typing out “degrees” and insert the symbol instead. Plus, once you’ve learned to do this, you’ll be able to insert other types of symbols too.
For more Word-related pointers, read our guide on how to display one page at a time in Microsoft Word. For many features, you sometimes need to install older versions of the .NET framework for Windows 10. We have you covered there, too.