Resources › For Students and Parents Microsoft Word Shortcuts and Commands Share Flipboard Email Print Getty Images / Geri Lavrov For Students and Parents Homework Help Homework Tips Learning Styles & Skills Study Methods Time Management Private School Test Prep College Admissions College Life Graduate School Business School Law School Distance Learning View More By Grace Fleming Education Expert M.Ed., Education Administration, University of Georgia B.A., History, Armstrong State University Grace Fleming, M.Ed., is a senior academic advisor at Georgia Southern University, where she helps students improve their academic performance and develop good study skills. our editorial process Grace Fleming Updated January 27, 2019 There are many shortcuts for common functions in Microsoft Word. These shortcuts or commands can come in handy when typing a report or term paper, or even a letter. It is a good idea to try some of these functions before you actually begin a project. Once you become familiar with the way they work, you may become hooked on shortcuts. Executing Shortcuts Before you can use shortcuts commands, it's important to understand a few requirements. If the shortcut involves a section of text (words you have typed), you will need to highlight the text before typing the command. For instance, to bold a word or words, you must highlight them first. For other commands, you may only need to place the cursor at a specific place. For instance, if you want to insert a footnote, place the cursor in the relevant position. The commands below are sectioned into groups by alphabetical order to make it easier to find the ones you need. Bold Through Italics Boldfacing a word or group of words is one of the handiest shortcut commands in Microsoft Word. Other commands, such as centering text, creating a hanging indent, or even calling for help can be useful shortcuts to know. The latter command—calling for help by pressing the F1 key—brings up a printed helpfile to the right of your document, which even includes its own search function. (The last section of this article contains instructions for the search command.) Function Shortcut Bold CTRL + B Center a paragraph CTRL + E Copy CTRL + C Create a hanging indent CTRL + T Decrease the font size by 1 point CTRL + [ Double-space lines CTRL + 2 Hanging Indent CTRL + T Help F1 Increase the font size by 1 point CTRL + ] Indent a paragraph from the left CTRL + M Indent CTRL + M Insert a footnote ALT + CTRL + F Insert an endnote ALT + CTRL + D Italic CTRL + I Justify Through Single-Space Lines Justifying a paragraph will make it flush left and flush right rather than ragged-right, which is the default in Word. But, you can also left-align a paragraph, create a page break, and even mark a table of contents or index entry, as the shortcut commands in this section show. Function Shortcut Justify a paragraph CTRL + J Left-align a paragraph CTRL + L Mark a table of contents entry ALT + SHIFT + O Mark an index entry ALT + SHIFT + X Page Break CTRL + ENTER Print CTRL + P Remove a paragraph indent from the left CTRL + SHIFT + M Remove paragraph formatting CTRL + Q Right-align a paragraph CTRL + R Save CTRL + S Search CTRL = F Select All CTRL + A Shrink Font One Point CTRL + [ Single-space lines CTRL + 1 Subscripts Through Undo If you're writing a science paper, you might need to place certain letters or numbers in subscript, such as in H20, the chemical formula for water. The subscript shortcut makes it easy to do this, but you can also create a superscript with a shortcut command. And, if you make a mistake, correcting it is only a CTRL = Z away. Function Shortcut To type a Subscript CTRL + = To type a Superscript CTRL + SHIFT + = Thesaurus SHIFT + F7 Remove Hanging Indent CTRL + SHIFT + T Remove Indent CTRL + SHIFT + M Underline CTRL + U Undo CTRL + Z Inserting Page Numbers in Word 2003 Here's How to Use Keyboard Shortcuts to Change the Size of Any Text Shortcuts to Multiply Decimals by 10, 100, or 1000 How to Double Space Your Paper Who Invented the Computer Mouse? How to Alphabetize a List in Microsoft Word How to Write the Perfect Essay Introduction: Examples and Techniques Title Page Examples and Formats 25 Google Search Tips for Genealogists What Vocabulary Words Apply to French Mathematics? Your Keyboard Can Speak German With These Helpful Tips Simple Instructions for Creating a Table of Contents Formatting Tips for Making a Table of Contents Who Founded Microsoft and What Made It So Successful? What Every Coder Should Know About Running Ruby Scripts What Is the Proper APA Formatting for Headings and Subheadings?