How to Subscript in Google Docs

A subscript is a way to represent the text at a smaller size than the normal text, and that text is placed slightly lower than the existing text. The subscript usage is found in mathematical expressions such as derivations, matrices, formulas, etc. Google Docs also provides the functionality to subscript the selected text. This post demonstrates numerous methods to apply the subscript functionality in Google Docs. The content of this post is as follows:

So let’s get started!

Method 1: Using Toolbar to Subscript in Google Docs

The “Toolbar” of Google Docs is the key player in applying most of the Google Docs functionalities. We will use the “Toolbar” to subscript any selected text. The following steps are explained here:

Step1: Select the Text

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First, the text is selected that the user wants to make subscript. In our case, the “2” in “x2” will be subscripted in Google Docs:

Step 2: Subscript the Selected Text

Navigate to the “Format” option, where a new dropdown menu appears. In that menu, click on the “Subscript” option:

After doing so, it is observed that the mathematical expression “x2” is converted into “x2”:

Method 2: Using the Shortcut Key to Subscript in Google Docs

Google Docs is a featureful tool to ease the process of writing and editing documents in a collaborative manner. Most of the Google Doc operations can be carried out using shortcuts. The “Subscript” functionality can be carried out using the shortcut key “CTRL+,”.

To do so, select the text you want to subscript and press the “CTRL” and “,” (comma) keys. The following “gif” shows the instant action to subscript in Google Docs using the shortcut key.

Bonus-Tip: Insert Symbols as a Subscript in Google Docs

Google Docs allows you to insert various symbols as a subscript in Google Docs. Here, we have developed the steps to show how the symbols can be directly inserted as subscripts.

Step 1: Choose the Location to Put the Symbol to Subscript

Place the cursor before the expression that you want to subscript. In our case, we have put the cursor between “H” and“O”:

Step 2: Insert Special Characters

To pick the symbol, you need to click on the “Insert” option from the toolbar and then navigate to the “Special Characters” option:

Step 3: Select the Character as a Subscript

Here, three dropdown menus are observed. Set the first dropdown value to “Categories”, the second to “Symbols” and the third dropdown’s value to “Subscript”. After doing so, you will get the list of the symbols that can be subscripted. Click on any of these (as we have selected “2”) to put it as a subscript at the cursor’s position:

The following figure validates that the subscript “2” is applied as a special character in Google Docs:


Google Docs provides the “Subscript” feature from the toolbar and the shortcut key “CTRL+,” (CTRL key with a comma) to subscript in Google Docs. Or to put the special characters as a subscript, navigate to the “Special characters” option from the “Menu” bar to subscript text. The “Insert Special Characters” feature inserts the specific symbol at the cursor’s location as a subscriptin Google Docs. While the shortcut key “CTRL+,” subscripts the selected text. In this guide, various Google Docs methods are utilized to subscript the selected text.