How Do I Get the Little Numbers by Words in Microsoft Word: A Step-by-Step Guide

To insert little numbers by words (also known as superscript) in Microsoft Word, simply highlight the number, go to the ‘Font’ group under the ‘Home’ tab, and click the ‘Superscript’ button (which looks like an ‘x’ with a small ‘2’ above it). Once you click it, the highlighted number will shrink and move slightly above the line of text.

After completing this action, the number will appear as a superscript, making it ideal for mathematical equations, endnotes, or other specialized text formatting needs.


Have you ever noticed those tiny numbers that sometimes appear next to words in a document and wondered how to add them yourself? Whether you’re writing a mathematical equation, including a footnote, or want to elevate your document’s look, learning how to get those little numbers by words in Microsoft Word is a handy skill. These small numbers, known as superscripts, are not just for mathematicians or scientists; anyone using Word might find themselves in need of this neat little trick. And the good news? It’s easier than you’d think.

This topic is relevant to students, professionals, and anyone who uses Microsoft Word for document creation. Whether you’re working on academic papers, business reports, or personal projects, understanding how to use superscripts can significantly improve the readability and professionalism of your document. Plus, it’s one of those skills that once you learn, you’ll use time and time again. Let’s dig into how to add these subtle, but impactful, details to your Word documents.

Step by Step Tutorial: Inserting Superscript Numbers in Word

The following steps will guide you through the process of adding superscript numbers to your Word document.

Step 1: Highlight the Number

Highlight the number you want to convert to superscript.

Selecting the correct number or letter is crucial. Make sure you highlight only what you want to appear as the superscript to avoid formatting the rest of the text incorrectly.

Step 2: Access the ‘Font’ Group

Go to the ‘Home’ tab and locate the ‘Font’ group.

The ‘Home’ tab is typically the default tab when you open a new document. The ‘Font’ group contains various text formatting options, including the superscript function.

Step 3: Click the ‘Superscript’ Button

Click the ‘Superscript’ button in the ‘Font’ group to apply the format.

The ‘Superscript’ button is represented by an ‘x’ with a small ‘2’ above it. Once you click it, the highlighted number will transform into a superscript.


Enhanced ReadabilitySuperscript numbers help to differentiate the main text from specific references or mathematical notations, making your document more readable.
Professional AppearanceDocuments with correctly formatted superscripts look more polished and professional, leaving a better impression on readers.
Easy to UseThe process to create superscripts in Word is simple and does not require advanced technical skills, making it accessible to all users.


Limited Font OptionsNot all fonts support the superscript format, which can limit your font choices when formatting a document.
Potential OveruseOverusing superscripts can clutter a document and make it harder to read, so it’s important to use them sparingly.
Conversion IssuesSuperscripts may not convert correctly when a document is transferred into different formats or software, requiring manual adjustments.

Additional Information

When working with superscripts in Microsoft Word, there are a few additional things to keep in mind. First, there are keyboard shortcuts that can make the process even faster. For Windows users, pressing ‘Ctrl’ + ‘Shift’ + ‘=’ will convert the highlighted text to superscript without needing to click through the menu options. For Mac users, the shortcut is ‘Command’ + ‘Shift’ + ‘+’.

Another point to consider is that Word also has a similar feature called subscript, which places the number slightly below the text line. It’s used for different purposes, such as chemical formulas or footnotes, and the process to apply it is nearly identical to superscript.

Lastly, remember that readability is key. Use superscript only when it’s necessary and ensure that the chosen font size maintains the clarity of your text.


  1. Highlight the number you wish to superscript.
  2. Go to the ‘Home’ tab and find the ‘Font’ group.
  3. Click the ‘Superscript’ button to apply the format.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use keyboard shortcuts for superscript?

Yes, you can use ‘Ctrl’ + ‘Shift’ + ‘=’ on Windows or ‘Command’ + ‘Shift’ + ‘+’ on Mac to quickly apply superscript formatting.

Will the superscript format be preserved if I copy and paste text?

Generally, the superscript format should be preserved when copying and pasting within Microsoft Word. However, when pasting into different software, you may need to reapply the formatting.

Can I apply superscript to multiple numbers at once?

Absolutely. Just highlight all the numbers you want to format before clicking the ‘Superscript’ button.

Is there a limit to how many characters I can make superscript?

No, there is no character limit. You can apply superscript formatting to as many characters as you need.

Can superscript be used in other Microsoft Office applications?

Yes, the superscript feature is available in other Office applications like Excel and PowerPoint and works similarly to Word.


Mastering the use of little numbers by words in Microsoft Word can elevate your document game to the next level. Superscripts are more than just a formatting tool; they are a way to convey specific information clearly and effectively. Whether it’s for academic citations, scientific formulas, or just to add a touch of sophistication to your documents, knowing how to apply superscripts is a must-have skill in your Word toolbox.

With the straightforward steps provided, you’ll be able to apply superscripts with ease and confidence. So go ahead, give it a try, and watch how those little numbers can make a big impact on your documents.

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