How to Use Subscript in Google Docs: A Step-by-Step Guide


Matthew Burleigh

Have you ever needed to add a little something extra to your Google Docs, like a subscript for a chemical formula or a mathematical equation? It’s actually pretty simple once you know how. In this article, we’ll walk through how to use subscript in Google Docs, step by step.

Step by Step Tutorial: Using Subscript in Google Docs

Before we dive into the steps, let’s clarify what we’re aiming to achieve. Using subscript in Google Docs will allow you to format text or numbers to appear slightly below the normal line of type, which is particularly useful for notations in scientific or mathematical documents.

Step 1: Highlight the Text

Start by highlighting the text you want to turn into subscript.

Once you’ve highlighted the text, it’s ready to be formatted. Make sure you only highlight the specific characters that need to be subscripted, as any other text will also be affected.

Step 2: Click on Format

Next, click on the “Format” option in the top menu.

The Format menu is where you’ll find various text formatting options, including bold, italic, and, of course, subscript.

Step 3: Select Text

After clicking on Format, move your cursor down to select “Text.”

The Text option will expand to show more specific formatting options.

Step 4: Choose Subscript

Finally, click on “Subscript” in the expanded menu.

Your highlighted text will now appear as subscript in your Google Doc. It’s as simple as that!

After completing these steps, the text you selected will now appear as subscript. This small change can make a big difference in presenting your data or formulas correctly.

Tips for Using Subscript in Google Docs

  • If you’re using subscript frequently, you can use the keyboard shortcut “Ctrl + ,” (Cmd + , on a Mac) to toggle subscript formatting.
  • Subscript can also be used for footnotes or to indicate trademark symbols.
  • If you need to clear subscript formatting, highlight the subscripted text and repeat the same process to uncheck the subscript format.
  • Subscript formatting does not affect the font size of the rest of your text, so there’s no need to adjust it manually.
  • Remember that subscript formatting may not be visible on all devices, so always double-check your work if it’s being shared or presented.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I use subscript for math equations?

Subscript is perfect for math equations, particularly when you’re dealing with exponents or chemical formulas. Just follow the steps above to format the specific numbers or letters that need to be subscripted.

Can I use subscript in Google Sheets?

Yes, you can use subscript in Google Sheets as well. The process is very similar to Google Docs – simply highlight the text and select Format > Text > Subscript.

Is there a keyboard shortcut for subscript?

Indeed, there is! You can press “Ctrl + ,” (Cmd + , on a Mac) to quickly apply subscript formatting to highlighted text.

Can I use subscript on my smartphone or tablet?

Yes, you can use subscript in the Google Docs app on your smartphone or tablet. The process may vary slightly depending on your device, but you’ll generally follow the same steps of highlighting the text and selecting the subscript option.

Will subscript formatting appear in a printed document?

Yes, if you print your Google Doc, any subscript formatting will appear on the printed document just as it does on the screen.


  1. Highlight the text you want to subscript.
  2. Click on Format in the top menu.
  3. Select Text from the dropdown menu.
  4. Choose Subscript from the expanded menu.


Using subscript in Google Docs is a handy tool that can enhance the professionalism and accuracy of your documents. Whether you’re a scientist jotting down formulas, a student writing a paper, or a business professional creating a report, knowing how to format your text with subscript is an essential skill. With the simple steps outlined above, you’ll be able to quickly and easily apply subscript to your text, making your documents look sharp and polished. Remember, it’s the little details that can make a big impact, and mastering the use of subscript in Google Docs is just one of the many ways you can take your document creation skills to the next level.

Matthew Burleigh

Matthew Burleigh has been writing tech content online for more than ten years. He enjoys writing about Google Docs in addition to many other applications and devices and has cumulatively covered Google’s word-processing application in hundreds of different articles.

He has been published on dozens of popular websites, and his works have accumulated millions of pageviews.
While focused primarily on tutorials and guides for popular electronics like the iPhone and iPad, as well as common applications like Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, and Excel, he covers topics across the entire technology spectrum.

You can read his bio here.

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