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How to enter symbols using Office AutoCorrect

Office AutoCorrect enters symbol

AutoCorrect doesn't always get the respect it deserves. Sure, we use it to correct typos, but the feature has more to offer than that. For instance, you can use it to insert frequently used symbols. 

To insert a symbol, you probably choose Symbol from the Insert menu. (In 2007, the Symbols group is on the Insert tab.) It's a simple process for a one-time insert, but it can become a nuisance if you insert the same symbol often. You could use the Clipboard to copy the symbol, but that only works until you copy something else to the Clipboard.

To reduce an often-repeated insert task, use AutoCorrect:

  1. Insert the symbol using the Insert command.
  2. Highlight the symbol.
  3. Select AutoCorrect from the Tools menu. In 2007, click the Office button and then click the Options button (in the bottom-right corner of the dialog box). Choose Proofing and then click AutoCorrect Options in the AutoCorrect Options section.
  4. In the Replace box, type a descriptive name that represents the symbol, such as infinity or euro. Make sure the highlighted symbol (step 2) is in the With box. If not, you might have to copy the symbol to the Clipboard and then paste it into the With box.
  5. Click Add.
  6. Click OK. (In 2007, click OK twice.)

When you want to insert the symbol, simply type the AutoCorrect Replace text (step 4) and Office will automatically replace the text with the symbol you specified in the With box.

About Susan Harkins

Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.

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