Keyboard Shortcuts for Vulgar Fractions in Windows and Mac

People use fractions extensively in mathematical calculations. However, there are also many different uses for fractions besides mathematical calculation. For example, it is common to write the fraction numbers for half as ½ and quarter as ¼. In this article, let us explain keyboards shortcuts for vulgar fractions in Windows and Mac along with different ways to you can type fractions in documents.

Alt Code Keyboard Shortcuts for Vulgar Fractions

There are some fraction numbers part of Unicode symbols which you can insert using alt code shortcuts. Below is the complete list of alt code shortcuts for vulgar fraction numbers.

Windows ShortcutMac ShortcutWord ShortcutVulgar FractionSymbol Description
Alt + 0188Option + 00BC00BC + Alt + X¼Vulgar fraction one quarter
Alt + 0189Option + 00BD00BD + Alt + X½Vulgar fraction one half
Alt + 0190Option + 00BE00BE + Alt + X¾Vulgar fraction three quarters
Alt + 8531Option + 21532153 + Alt + XVulgar fraction one third
Alt + 8532Option + 21542154 + Alt + XVulgar fraction two third
Alt + 8533Option + 21552155 + Alt + XVulgar fraction one fifth
Alt + 8534Option + 21562156 + Alt + XVulgar fraction two fifths
Alt + 8535Option + 21572157 + Alt + XVulgar fraction three fifths
Alt + 8536Option + 21582158 + Alt + XVulgar fraction four fifths
Alt + 8537Option + 21592159 + Alt + XVulgar fraction one sixth
Alt + 8538Option + 215A215A + Alt + XVulgar fraction five sixths
Alt + 8539Option + 215B215B + Alt + XVulgar fraction one eight
Alt + 8540Option + 215C215C + Alt + XVulgar fraction three eights
Alt + 8541Option + 215D215D + Alt + XVulgar fraction five eights
Alt + 8542Option + 215E215E + Alt + XVulgar fraction seven eights
Alt + 8543Option + 215F215F + Alt + XFraction numerator one
Alt + 8528Option + 21502150 + Alt + XVulgar fraction one seventh
Alt + 8529Option + 21512151 + Alt + XVulgar fraction one ninth
Alt + 8530Option + 21522152 + Alt + XVulgar fraction one tenth
Alt + 8585Option + 21892189 + Alt + XVulgar fraction zero thirds
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Typing Fractions in Windows Documents

There are many different ways to type vulgar fraction numbers on Windows documents like Word, PowerPoint and Excel including Outlook emails.

Using Alt Code Shortcuts in Windows

If you want to insert one of the fraction numbers as shown in the above table then use the alt code in the first column. Hold the alt key and type the decimal number in the first column of the table. For example, alt + 8530 will produce vulgar fraction one-tenth like ⅒.

Alt + X Method for Word Documents in Windows

Though the above method is easy, you need to have a keyboard with separate number pad. If you don’t’ have, use the hexadecimal code in the second column of the above table. Type the code using normal keys then press alt and x keys. For example, 2157 + Alt + X will produce vulgar fraction three fifths like ⅗.

Using Character Map in Windows

Other option to find special symbols on Windows is to use the Character Map app.

  • Press “Win + R” keys to open Run prompt.
  • Type charmap command and press the enter key.
  • It will open the Character Map app where you can search and find the fraction numbers.
  • Select the font as “Arial” and look for the fractions. You can find the vulgar fractions in two places as shown below.
Choosing Fraction Numbers from Character Map
Choosing Fraction Numbers from Character Map-1
  • Click on the number and then “Select” button.
  • Finally, click on “Copy” button to copy the symbol and paste on your document.

Setting Up AutoFormat in Office Documents

Microsoft Office has many useful functions and AutoFormat is one such feature. Whenever you type 1/2 in Word, it will automatically convert it into a fraction as ½. By default, Word has this auto formatting enabled. However, you can also manually enable this AutoFormat option.  

  • Open Word or PowerPoint document and go to “File > Options” menu.
  • Go to “Proofing” section and click on “AutoCorrect Options…” button. This will open “AutoCorrect” pop-up
  • Under “AutoFormat As You Type” tab, enable “Fractions (1/2) with fraction character (½).
AutoFormat for Typing Fractions
AutoFormat for Typing Fractions

This will help you to type the fraction numbers like ½, ¼, ¾, etc. However, fractions are always not like ½ or ¼, sometimes you may need to type fractions like ⅙. As shown in the below picture, auto formatting will only help in some fractions and not all like 1/8 or 1/10.   

Typing Fraction Numbers in Word
Typing Fraction Numbers in Word

In this case, you can use AutoCorrect feature to automatically replace the typed content with the default value.

  • When you are in AutoCorrect pop-up, navigate to “AutoCorrect” tab.
  • Under “Replace text as you type” section, type the replace and with values. For example, type 7/8 under “Replace” box and ⅞ under “With” box. You need to have a fraction format number to paste in the “With” box.
AutoCorrect in Word
AutoCorrect in Word

Remember, you can always press “Control + Z” to revert back the original typed values in both auto formatting and auto corrections.

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Related: How to insert emoji symbols using alt code shortcuts?

Typing Fraction Numbers in Excel

Excel is an exception in which most of the alt code and other keyboard shortcuts will not work. However, you can setup AutoCorrect in Excel also.

  • Open Excel sheet and navigate to “File > Options”.
  • Go to the “Proofing” tab and click on “AutoCorrect Options…” button.
  • Similar to Word, setup the replace/with text under “AutoCorrect” tab. For example, you can replace 1/2 with 1/2 fraction.
  • Click on the “Add” button and then “OK” to save the changes.
Insert Fraction Numbers in Excel
Insert Fraction Numbers in Excel

Henceforth, Excel will automatically change the numbers into fractions as per the auto correction settings.

Typing Fractional Equations in Office Documents

If you have to type many fractional equations then the typing with shortcuts may be a tedious work. The alternate option is to use equation tools in Office documents. When you are in Office documents, navigate to “Insert > Equation” menu. Click on the “Fraction” drop-down and choose the type of fractional equation you want to type. You can choose from different options like Stacked Fraction, Skewed Fraction, Linear Fraction, Small Fraction and Differential Fraction. Start typing your fractional equation inside the box.

Typing Fractional Equations in Office Documents
Typing Fractional Equations in Office Documents

Typing Fractions in Mac Documents

You can also easily insert vulgar fraction on Mac documents like Pages and Keynote similar to Windows documents.

Using Option Code Shortcuts in Mac

You can use the alt key and hexadecimal code in the second column of the above shortcuts table to insert fractions. For example, press alt + 00BE will produce the fraction number as ¾. However, you should first change the keyboard input method to Unicode Hex Input for this method to work.

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Use Character Viewer App

Alternatively, press “Control + Command + Spacebar” to open Character Viewer app. In this app, search for “fraction” to filter and insert fractional numbers on your Mac documents.

Inserting Fraction Numbers from Character Viewer Mac
Inserting Fraction Numbers from Character Viewer Mac

The advantage is that you can find various font variations for each fraction.

Using Auto Correction in iWork Apps Like Pages

Similar to Microsoft Office documents, you can also setup auto correction in Apple documents like Pages.

  • Open Pages document and go to “Pages > Preferences…” menu.
  • Under “Auto-Correction” tab, click on the + icon in “Replacement” section.
  • Add Replace/With texts to replace the numbers with fractions when you type.
Auto-Correction for Fractions in Mac Pages
Auto-Correction for Fractions in Mac Pages

Henceforth, whenever you type the text it will be replaced as per the auto correction settings. You can also view the suggestion when you type as shown below.

Typing Fraction Numbers in Mac Pages
Typing Fraction Numbers in Mac Pages

Using the fractions, you can easily type simple arithmetical calculations like below.

¼ + ¼ = ½

Typing Fractions in Webpages

Three fractions have HTML entity names for using directly in HTML coding as below.

  • 1/4 = &frac 14;
  • 1/2 = &frac 12;
  • 3/4 = &frac 34;

For other cases, you can use the decimal numbers like &# 190; or hexadecimal decimal numbers like &#x 00BE;. If you want to insert the fractions in CSS and JavaScript then use in the format \00CA and \u00CA respectively.

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