How To Make a Fraction in Google Docs [Complete Guide]

For some Google Docs users, knowing how to make a fraction in Google Docs can be quite confusing. Fortunately, creating fractions in Google Docs is not complicated at all. There are several methods you can use to express fractions more easily.

Fractional numerals can be useful in avoiding lengthy number words, such as “four-fifteenths” (4/15) or “two and three-fourths” (2 ¾). In addition, fractions are generally more readable and understandable to most readers. They are also more appropriate for use in various contexts, such as tables, charts, graphs, and mathematical equations.

The best way to write fractions in Google Docs is by enabling the “Automatic Substitutions” feature in your “Preferences” settings. Once enabled, numbers separated by the forward slash symbol (/), like “3/4,” will automatically be replaced with the fractional numeral “¾.”

To learn more about how to make a fraction in Google Docs, read on.

How To Make a Fraction in Google Docs Using Special Characters

If you only need to create one or two fractions in your Google Docs document, using the special character option can be a quick and convenient method. However, it may not be the most practical approach for documents with numerous fractions.

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to make a fraction in Google Docs using special characters:

  1. Open Google Docs and either start a new document or open an existing one.
  2. Click on the area where you want to insert a fraction.
  3. Click “Insert” in the toolbar and select “Special Characters.”
How to make a fraction in Google Docs—Where to find Special Characters option in Google Docs

 

  1. In the “Special Characters” window, you have two options to find the fraction you need — filter options or the search box:
    1. To use the filter options, select “Number” and “Fractions/Related” as the category. This should display fractions and related symbols in the search results.
Using Special Characters filter options to find fractions

 

  1. You can also use the search box and enter “fraction” to find relevant characters.
Using Special Characters' search function to find fractions

 

5. Once you find the desired fraction, simply click to select it.

6. Close the “Insert Special Characters” window, and the fraction will be copied to your document.

How To Put a Fraction in Google Docs Using Equations

To make a fraction in Google Docs using equations, follow the steps outlined below:

  1. Open your Google Docs document.
  2. Click “Insert” and then select “Equation.” This will open a new line of tools in the toolbar featuring categories of equation variables.
  3. Click on the “Math Operations” drop-down list and select the first option.
  4. You will be prompted to manually enter a value for the numerator and denominator of your fraction.
Where to find the fraction option in Google Docs when using Equations

 

  1. Enter the desired numerator and press “Enter.” Then, type the value for the denominator, followed by another Enter. You can also use the “Right Arrow” key or “Tab” to move to the denominator field and complete the process.
  2. To finish, press the “Enter” key twice or use the “Right Arrow” or “Tab” key. This will finalize the fraction creation.
Sample fraction using Equations option

 

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How To Make a Fraction in Google Docs Using Superscript and Subscript Functions

If you don’t want to be bothered with changing any settings or scrolling through drop-down lists to create fractions, you can use keyboard shortcuts to do so.

This is also a manual way of creating fractions, just a bit faster. Still, you are recommended to enable “Automatic substitutions” (which we’ll discuss later) if you plan to work with a significant number of fractions.

Here’s how to create fractions using “Superscript” and “Subscript” functions in Google Docs:

  1. Open your Google Docs document.
  2. Use the shortcut “Ctrl + .” to shift to superscript mode, then type your numerator.
  3. Repeat the superscript shortcut (Ctrl + .) to switch back to normal text.
  4. Enter a forward slash (/) to represent the fraction bar.
  5. Use the shortcut “Ctrl + ,” to shift to subscript mode, then type your denominator.
  6. Repeat the subscript shortcut (Ctrl + ,) to switch back to normal text once you’re done.

And there you have it! Once you complete all the steps above, you should have a fraction that looks like this:

Sample fraction using Subscript and Superscript

How To Make Fractions in Google Docs Using Add-ons

Add-ons can also be used to make writing fractions on Google Docs much easier. They can also enable you to create more complex equations involving fractions. To access add-ons, you can install them from the Google Workspace Marketplace, a secure source of add-ons within the Google Docs web application.

To get started, follow the steps outlined below:

  1. Open your Google Docs document.
  2. Select “Extensions” on the menu bar and click “Add-ons.” To access Google Workspace Marketplace, select “Get add-ons.”
How to access Extensions store in Google Docs

 

  1. Browse the marketplace for add-ons that can assist you in creating both simple and complex mathematical equations, including fractions. You can use the search bar to find the specific add-on that suits your needs. For this guide, we will use “Hypatia” as an example.
Using the Google Workspace Marketplace search function to find add-ons

 

  1. Click on the desired add-on and select “Install.”
Download page of an add-on from Google Workplace Marketplace

 

  1. When a pop-up appears, click “Continue” to allow the installation to proceed.
Google asking for consent to install add-on

 

  1. If Google prompts to grant permissions for the add-on to access your data, click “Allow” to proceed.
Hypatia add-on data sharing permissions

 

  1. Once the installation is complete, you can access the add-on under the “Extensions” menu.
  2. Navigate to “Extensions” on the menu bar, then select “Hypatia Create.” Click “Mini Editor” to open the Mini Editor tab, which will appear on the right-hand side of your workspace.
Where to find the Mini Editor after installing Hypatia addon

 

  1. Within the “Mini Editor” tab, select the fraction function, and enter the values for your numerator and denominator. You can switch between the numerator and denominator by pressing “Tab.”
  2. To insert the fraction into your document, click “Insert.”
Hypatia Mini-Editor with fraction function

How To Make a Fraction in Google Docs Using a Third-Party Website

Another useful trick for creating equations or single numerical fractions in Google Docs is using third-party websites, particularly web-based math equation editors. Incorporating tools outside of Google Docs can add uniqueness and a professional touch to your documents.

In this guide, we will use Matcha.io as an example.

  1. Open your browser and go to www.matcha.io.
  2. Select “Open Editor” on the website. You may be prompted to complete a tutorial if it’s your first time using the website.
matcha.io home page with Open Editor button

 

  1. In the document containing formulas, highlight the fraction in the first equation by holding the “Shift” key.
Where to find the fraction function in matcha.io's math editor

 

  1. Copy the fraction using the “Ctrl + C” shortcut.
  2. Delete the entire equation by highlighting the line and pressing the “backspace/delete” key.
  3. Paste the copied fraction into the empty text box using the “Ctrl + V” shortcut.
Using the fraction function in matcha.io's math editor to create a fraction

 

  1. Edit the fraction by clicking on the numerator and entering your desired value. Press the “Tab” key to switch to the denominator.
A fraction with the value 1/2

 

  1. Once you’ve entered the desired values for both placeholders, press “Tab” again to stop editing the fraction.
  2. Click “Image” in the “Export” drop-down list in the menu bar.
  3. Save the image as a PNG file and enable the option for a transparent background. You can also reduce the padding to 1 for better results.
An Image button in the menu bar of the math editor

 

  1. Click “Export.”
matcha.io's image export options

 

  1. To paste the exported image into your Google Docs document, go to the “Insert” menu, select “Image,” then click “From Computer.”
  2. Choose the exported image.

How To Make a Fraction in Google Docs Automatically

To streamline the process, you can adjust your Google Docs “Automatic Substitutions” settings according to your preferences.

“Automatic Substitutions” allow you to transform specific texts into preferred formats. For instance, when you type “1/2” in your document, it automatically changes to a special character like “½.”

Follow these steps to customize your “Automatic Substitutions” settings in Google Docs:

  1. Open your Google Docs document.
  2. Open the “Insert” menu and select “Special Characters.”
Where to find the Special Characters option in Google Docs

 

  1. Search for fractions and select them individually to copy them into your document.
How to find fractions in the Special Characters window using the search box

 

  1. Go to the “Tools” menu and select “Preferences.”
Where to find the Preferences settings in Google Docs

.

  1. Tick the checkbox to enable “Automatic Substitutions.”
Where to find the Automatic Substitution option in the Preferences window in Google Docs

 

  1. In the “Replace” column, enter all the fractions you’ll use (e.g., 1/2, 1/4, 1/8).
  2. In your document, copy the corresponding fractions to the “With” column matching their respective values. (e.g, 1/2 = ½)
Where to insert new values for Substitution in the Preferences window

 

  1. To save the new substitutions, click “OK.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Will the Fractions Copy Over to Another App?

Yes, fractions from your Google Docs document will be copied to another app, just like regular text. However, it’s important to note that fractions presented in image format may not be successfully copied to other apps.

Can You Change the Size of Your Fractions?

Yes, you can change the size of your fractions just like you would with regular text. Simply highlight the fraction and adjust the font size using the options available on the toolbar.

Can You Change the Font of Your Fractions?

Yes, you can change the font of your fractions in Google Docs. It’s as simple as highlighting the fraction and modifying the font style using the options available on the toolbar. Formatting fractions works in the same way as formatting regular text.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know how to make a fraction in Google Docs, you can enhance your Google Docs experience and give your documents a more professional look using the abovementioned functionalities, such as special characters, add-ons, and automatic substitutions.

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