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How to make a degree symbol on mac

how to make a degree symbol on mac

Creating documents or handling digital content on a Mac can often involve the use of various symbols and characters. One such symbol that might seem elusive at first glance is the degree symbol (�). Whether you’re typing a weather report, drafting a scientific paper, or completing a math assignment, you may find yourself in need of this small, yet significant character. In this article, we’ll explore various methods to make a degree symbol on a Mac, ensuring that you can easily include it in your work. As a Mac user, I’ve found these techniques particularly useful and straightforward to execute. As we navigate through different methods, I’ll share with you the steps that have worked seamlessly for me. For further information on keyboard shortcuts and symbol insertion, you can consult the official Apple Support page.


Common Scenarios:

Frequently Drafting Scientific Documents 📄

  • Typing temperatures or measurements includes using the degree symbol.
  • In scientific papers, the accuracy of symbols is crucial, and the degree symbol is often essential.

Working With Mathematical Content 🔢

  • When working with angles in geometry, the degree symbol is a necessity.
  • Conveying units of temperature in mathematical formulas or problems.

Designing Presentations or Graphics 🎨

  • The need to represent temperature or angles visually during slide presentations.
  • Creating graphics with precise details, such as weather icons including temperature.

Step-by-Step Guide. How To Make A Degree Symbol On Mac:

Method 1: Keyboard Shortcut 🖥

  • Place your cursor where you want the degree symbol to appear in your document.
  • Press and hold down the Option key on your Mac keyboard.
  • While holding the Option key, press the Shift key followed by the 8 key.
  • Release all keys to see the degree symbol (�) appear in the text.

Note: The keyboard shortcut for the degree symbol can vary depending on your Mac’s keyboard layout or language settings.

Conclusion: The keyboard shortcut method is by far the fastest and most convenient way to insert a degree symbol when you’re typing on a Mac.

Method 2: Emoji & Symbols Viewer 🌐

  • Click on the Edit menu at the top of your screen when in a text document or field.
  • Select ‘Emoji & Symbols’ or press Control + Command + Space.
  • In the search bar of the Emoji & Symbols viewer, type ‘degree’ to filter the relevant symbol.
  • Double-click the degree symbol (�) to insert it into your text at the current cursor position.

Note: The Emoji & Symbols viewer provides a plethora of symbols and characters, making it a versatile tool for diverse typography needs.

Conclusion: This method offers a visual selection of symbols, which can be helpful if you’re unsure of the keyboard shortcut or need additional uncommon characters.

Method 3: Character Viewer Shortcut 📌

  • Right-click in the text field where you want to insert the degree symbol.
  • Choose ‘Emoji & Symbols’ from the contextual menu.
  • Type ‘degree’ in the search field of the Characters window that appears.
  • Select the degree symbol (�) and click on the ‘Insert’ button.

Note: This method works similarly to using the Edit menu but can be accessed faster with a right-click.

Conclusion: Right-clicking to access Emoji & Symbols is a handy option when you’re in the middle of typing and want to insert the symbol without much interruption.

Method 4: Text Replacement 🔄

  • Open System Preferences from your Dock or Apple menu.
  • Click on ‘Keyboard’ followed by ‘Text’ tab.
  • Click the ‘+’ button to add a new text replacement.
  • In the ‘Replace’ column, type a shortcut phrase like ‘deg’.
  • In the ‘With’ column, insert the degree symbol using one of the previous methods.

Note: You may need to ensure that the text replacement feature is enabled in the application you’re using.

Conclusion: Text replacement is incredibly efficient for frequently used symbols and can save time when handling large documents or repetitive tasks.

Method 5: Copy and Paste 📋

  • Search for a degree symbol on the web or open a document where it’s available.
  • Use your mouse to select the degree symbol (�).
  • Right-click and select ‘Copy’ or press Command + C to copy it to your clipboard.
  • Click where you want to insert the symbol and either right-click and select ‘Paste’ or press Command + V.

Note: This method is quick but can be less efficient if you need to use the symbol repeatedly in a document.

Conclusion: Copy and paste is a reliable fallback option if you’re having trouble with other methods or are on a different device temporarily.


Precautions and Tips:

Keep Shortcuts Handy ☝

  • Memorize the keyboard shortcut for the degree symbol or note it down for frequent use.
  • Use stickers or keyboard covers with common symbols and shortcuts printed on them.
  • Customize your Mac’s keyboard settings to create a shortcut that’s more intuitive for you.

Additional Insights

When creating content on a Mac, being familiar with the ‘Emoji & Symbols’ viewer can greatly expand your typographic capabilities beyond just the degree symbol. It’s a treasure trove of diverse characters ranging from mathematical symbols to foreign alphabets, allowing for truly diverse and inclusive digital communication. Moreover, if you’re someone who enjoys personalizing their workflow, delving into the System Preferences to customize your keyboard and text shortcuts can prove to be a real productivity booster.

Finding the perfect balance between these methods to make a degree symbol on your Mac is about understanding your needs and workflow. Are you someone who deals with symbols sporadically or do they form a core part of your daily work? Answering this will guide you in setting up an efficient strategy for symbol insertion.

For those interested in exploring comprehensive lists of keyboard shortcuts, the official Apple Keyboard Shortcuts page offers extensive information. It’s an invaluable resource, especially when mastering the skills to navigate and operate your Mac like a pro. Check their Keyboard Shortcuts page for more details.


In closing, I hope that my personal experiences and the easy-to-follow methods I’ve shared will empower you to handle the degree symbol on your Mac with ease. Whether you opt for the swift keyboard shortcut, the versatile Emoji & Symbols viewer, or the convenience of text replacement, you’re well-equipped to rise to the occasion in any typing scenario that demands a degree of precision. Remember, it’s the small details like correctly using the degree symbol that can enhance the professionalism and clarity of your work. Feel free to refer back to this article as a resource and check out the Apple Support for additional assistance if needed.


On your Mac keyboard, press Shift + Option + 8 simultaneously to insert a degree symbol (°).

Yes, you can use the Character Viewer. Click on the Edit menu, select Emoji & Symbols, and choose the degree symbol from the list.

No, there isn’t a text command on Mac for the degree symbol. Use keyboard shortcuts or the Character Viewer instead.

The quickest method is using the keyboard shortcut Shift + Option + 8 directly within Pages or Keynote.

No special settings are required. Use the keyboard shortcut or Character Viewer in any text field or application.

Yes, the keyboard shortcut generally works across all Mac applications where text input is possible.

No, but you can customize the keyboard from System Preferences if needed. For more information, visit Apple’s Mac homepage.

The degree symbol shortcut might vary depending on the keyboard layout. Check your keyboard’s documentation or use the Character Viewer.

Yes, go to System Preferences > Keyboard > Text and set up a custom shortcut for the degree symbol.

You can find more information and detailed instructions on Apple Support’s website.