June 19, 2022 by Luis F. Dominguez Hispanic Culture, Spanish Instruction 0 comments
You’ve just started learning Spanish and it doesn’t seem as difficult as you feared. Unfortunately, when you go to start typing out all of your amazing knowledge, you get frustrated by your keyboard. That’s right, we’ve all been there. All those strange characters unknown in English are giving you headaches: accents, tilde, and diaeresis, but there’s a simple solution!
Here at Homeschool Spanish Academy, we’ve prepared a cheat sheet for you! No matter if you’re writing on a Mac or PC, on an iOS or Android device, after reading this post—typing in Spanish will never be a problem again.
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
- How To Type Spanish Accents
- Shortcuts for Mac & PC
- Spanish Alt Codes for PC
- 2 Spanish Keyboard Layouts
- Online Spanish Keyboard Options
- Spanish Keyboard Option on Mobile Devices
- Improve Your Fluency With Spanish Lessons (Start for Free!)
How To Type Spanish Accent Marks
Those pesky accents, right? First, it’s hard to learn how to use them, and then, it’s hard to type them! But don’t worry, several options exist to choose from and you are the one who will decide which one suits you the best.
One of the most basic options is to simply create your own library of Spanish accents and punctuation marks by copying these characters á, é, í, ó, ú, ¡, ¿, and then paste them on your documents whenever you need them. But that seems a little too simple—until of course, you can’t find the document where you’ve stored them for copying. Then you have to search for them again, gathering them one by one… and that’s not simple at all!
Another option is to set your keyboard layout to Spanish keyboard. But, unless you do most of your work in Spanish, that’s simply impractical. Instead, I highly recommend that you learn the keyboard shortcuts to give you quick access to Spanish accents any time you need them.
Learn more: How to Write and Pronounce Spanish Accent Marks
Shortcuts for Mac & PC
A shortcut is a special combination of keys defined by programmers that generate unusual characters not included in your keyboard. Although Mac and PC operating systems offer a different set of shortcuts, they include a way to write these Spanish characters without having to change the settings of your keyboard.
I’m going to take you to the process of writing Spanish characters in your keyboard step by step. At the beginning, it may be a bit annoying but once you get used to it, you won’t even notice it. To avoid any confusion, let’s do first Mac and then we’ll explore the PC shortcuts.
Spanish Keyboard: Mac
In Mac devices from 2011 to date, there is an easy method to type accents that consist of holding down the key you need longer than usual and a pop-up menu will appear with a series of options to choose from. It’s the same system used on iPhones and iPads. Sometimes, this method won’t work depending on the word processor software you are using.
If the “easy method” doesn’t end up working out for you, don’t worry. The traditional option is not too complicated. For accents, all you need to do is to press the Option key + e, and the letter you need at the same time and then release the keys.
Actually, we have created a video that explains this very process and will help you to understand it better. Also, you can simply follow this table:
|Spanish Character||Mac Code||Spanish Character||Mac Code||Spanish Character||Mac Code|
|Á||Option + e, Shift + a||á||Option + e, a||Ñ||Option + e, Shift + n|
|É||Option + e, Shift + e||é||Option + e, e||ñ||Option + e, n|
|Í||Option + e, Shift + i||í||Option + e, i||¿||Shift + Option + ?|
|Ó||Option + e, Shift + o||ó||Option + e, o||¡||Shift + Option + 1|
|Ú||Option + e, Shift + u||ú||Option + e, u|
Spanish Keyboard: PC
Perhaps the best option to type accents on Windows is to press the apostrophe key (‘) followed by the vowel you want to accent. As in the following table:
|Spanish Character||Windows Code||Spanish Character||Windows Code|
|Á||‘ + Shift + a||á||‘ + a|
|É||‘ + Shift + e||é||‘ + e|
|Í||‘ + Shift + i||í||‘ + i|
|Ó||‘ + Shift + o||ó||‘ + o|
|Ú||‘ + Shift + u||ú||‘ + u|
For other Spanish characters commonly used just follow these next table:
|Spanish Character||Windows Code|
|Ñ||˜ + Shift + n|
|ñ||˜ + n|
|¡||Alt + 1|
|¿||Alt + ?|
If this method doesn’t work on your computer, try using the right Alt key sometimes also labeled as AltGr. All you need to do to add accents with this method is to press the right Alt key at the same as the vowel. If the vowel is capitalized, then you need to press three keys at the same time: the vowel, the right Alt key, and the Shift key.
This way also works for other common Spanish characters as you’ll see in the following table that summarizes the right Alt key method:
|Spanish Character||Windows right Alt key Code||Spanish Character||Windows right Alt key Code||Spanish Character||Windows right Alt key Code|
|Á||Alt + Shift + a||á||Alt + a||Ñ||Alt + Shift + n|
|É||Alt + Shift + e||é||Alt + e||ñ||Alt + n|
|Í||Alt + Shift + i||í||Alt + i||¿||Alt + ?|
|Ó||Alt + Shift + o||ó||Alt + o||¡||Alt + 1|
|Ú||Alt + Shift + u||ú||Alt + u|
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Alt Codes for PC
A third method to type Spanish accents and punctuation marks in Windows is by using character codes, also known as ASCII code. This system is a gift from a different age, as it was first published in 1963, and it may not run anymore in some devices.
This method requires an extra step and works differently depending on if you have a numeric keypad or not. Let’s explain both ways first, followed by a list of the Alt Codes.
With Numeric Keypad
First, find the Number Lock key at the top left of your numeric keypad and press it. A small light will turn on and that’s the sign that your numeric keypad is now working. Now, find the “alt” key to the left of your space bar, press it and hold it down. With the “alt” key still pressed, type the code for the needed character and release both keys at the same time. Bingo!
Without a Numeric Keypad
However, most laptops and wireless keyboards don’t include a numeric keypad these days. On these devices this method is a little bit different.
First, find the function key “fn” at the bottom left of your keyboard. Then, find the “num lock” key to the top right corner of your keyboard. Press both keys at the same time and this will turn on your Number Lock. Now, you can type the number keys located in the top horizontal row of your keyboard to use the “alt” codes as follows:
|Spanish Character||Alt Code||Spanish Character||Alt Code||Spanish Character||Alt Code|
2 Spanish Keyboard Layouts
The reason for the existence of different keyboard layouts is simple: some languages use different characters more than others. For this reason, software engineers created an international keyboard that is the global standard, but also several different keyboards designed to specifically take care of the different needs of languages. The Spanish keyboard is one of those.
This layout is also known as the US International English keyboard. It’s the recommended layout for people who use the traditional QWERTY keyboard but need some non-English characters from time to time.
This keyboard layout supports all major Western European languages and it uses the right alt key (AltGr) as a modifier for special characters, as explained before.
A keyboard layout designed with the Spanish language in mind is a great tool for Spanish-speaking countries. The Spanish keyboard eliminates the need for shortcuts and includes the letter Ñ, as well as Spanish-only punctuation marks such as the initial exclamation and question marks ¡ ¿.
Online Spanish Keyboards
Finally, another option to write those Spanish characters not available in your traditional QWERTY keyboard layout is to use an online Spanish keyboard where you can just copy and paste the characters you may need.
How to Use an Online Spanish Keyboard
These online keyboards are actually very easy to use. They’re set to work for many different languages so you just need to choose the one you need.
The way they work is very simple, the online Spanish keyboard will offer you a blank space and a series of Spanish characters from where you can choose from. This way you are able to write whatever you may need to write and then copy it and paste it on whatever software or platform you might be working on.
Learn How to Use Spanish Keyboard Shortcuts
Visit your Youtube channel! Watch this video and learn how to use the Spanish keyboard and alt codes.
Spanish Keyboard Option on Mobile Devices
Writing in Spanish on mobile devices is even easier to do than on computers. It doesn’t matter if you own an iOS or an Android device, both systems allow for you to pull up a Spanish keyboard on your phone or tablet.
However, most times you won’t even need to do that. If your needs for Spanish characters are limited, all you need to do is press the needed vowel and keep it pressed until a series of options with accents and diaeresis appear. Then just choose the required character from the menu.
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Luis F. Dominguez
Freelance Writer at Homeschool Spanish Academy
Luis F. Domínguez is a freelance writer and independent journalist interested in travel, languages, art, books, history, philosophy, politics and sports. He has written for Fodor’s, Yahoo!, Sports Illustrated, Telemundo, and Villa Experience, among other brands of print and digital media in Europe and North America.
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Spanish alt codes spanish keyboard
Go to Settings > Change PC Settings > Time & Language > Region & Language. 2. Click on “Add a Language” and select “Spanish.” This will add it to your list of languages. It will appear as Spanish with the note “language pack available.”How do you write Spanish words on a keyboard? ›
- á (lower case a, acute accent) = Press Ctrl + ' (apostrophe), then the letter a. é (lower case e, acute accent) = Press Ctrl + ' (apostrophe), then the letter e. ...
- Á (upper case A, acute accent) = Press Ctrl + ' (apostrophe), then Shift + a. ...
- ¿ (inverted question mark) = Press Alt + Ctrl + Shift + ? (
- á = Alt + 0225.
- Á = Alt + 0193.
- é = Alt + 0233.
- É = Alt + 0201.
- í = Alt + 0237.
- Í = Alt + 0205.
- ó = Alt + 0243.
- Ó = Alt + 0211.
Windows Computer or Laptop
Enable the numeric keypad by turning on the Num lock key. Hold the Alt key then type 164 on the numeric keypad to create a lowercase ñ. For the uppercase Ñ, hold the Alt key then type 165.
In the Spanish alphabet, ñ is an additional letter, not just an n with an accent mark, which is called a tilde. It is called an eñe and is pronounced “enye.” It is used in many words. Substituting a plain n, a whole different letter, can change the word.How do I write in Spanish in word? ›
Hold down just lightly press both together the ctrl key and the accent key let go and then type yourHow do you do the Spanish n? ›
In ASCII, for a lowercase eñe, the numerical code is 164. So, in your word processor, you should press and hold Alt until you finish typing the number 164 in the number pad to get the ñ to appear. To insert an upper case eñe, or Ñ, hold Alt and type 165.How do I type an O with an accent? ›
Accented characters and shortcuts
Example 1: To type the letter ó, hold down the Control key, then press the apostrophe key. Release both keys and type o. The accented letter should appear. Example 2: To type the letter Ó, hold down the Control key, then press the apostrophe key.
To insert an ASCII character, press and hold down ALT while typing the character code. For example, to insert the degree (º) symbol, press and hold down ALT while typing 0176 on the numeric keypad. You must use the numeric keypad to type the numbers, and not the keyboard.How many Spanish letters are there? ›
How many letters are there in the Spanish alphabet? The only difference between the English and Spanish written alphabets is that Spanish has 27 letters, while English has only 26. The great news about the Spanish alphabet is that, from a reading perspective, it's essentially the Latin alphabet we know and love.
- Press and hold the alt key (sometimes known as option)
- Whilst still holding alt/option, press n.
- Wait for the ˜ symbol to appear (highlighted in yellow)
- Now let go of both keys and press n again.
The first papa means potato. The second papa. Means father or dad. So you would not say oh i loveHow do you type û? ›
Upper case U with a circumflex accent (Û), press Ctrl + ^ (Ctrl + Shift + 6) and then type capital letter U. Lower case u with a circumflex accent (û), press Ctrl + ^ (Ctrl + Shift + 6) and then type lower case u.How do I type é? ›
Microsoft Windows users can type an "é" by pressing Alt + 1 3 0 or Alt + 0 2 3 3 on the numeric pad of the keyboard. "É" can be typed by pressing Alt + 1 4 4 or Alt + 0 2 0 1 . On US International and UK English keyboard layouts, users can type the acute accent letter "é" by typing AltGR + E .How do you type alternate letters? ›
Typing the alternate character on a key
To type the alternate character on a key, press the right Alt key and the desired key. For example, type Alt + E to type € on a French or German keyboard.
Ó, ó (o-acute) is a letter in the Czech, Emilian-Romagnol, Faroese, Hungarian, Icelandic, Kashubian, Polish, Slovak, and Sorbian languages. This letter also appears in the Afrikaans, Catalan, Dutch, Irish, Nynorsk, Bokmål, Occitan, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian and Galician languages as a variant of letter "o".What is É called? ›
Acute accent (é)
The acute accent is used over the letter e in French to indicate the vowel should be pronounced as ay. In Spanish, this character is used over vowels to indicate which syllable in a word is stressed. In English, a number of French loanwords may use this mark.
The tilde (/ˈtɪldeɪ, -di, -də, ˈtɪld/) ˜ or ~, is a grapheme with several uses. The name of the character came into English from Spanish and Portuguese, which in turn came from the Latin titulus, meaning "title" or "superscription".How do you get Spanish to recognize a word? ›
In Outlook 2019 and 2021 and Word 2019 and 2021
On the Review tab, in the Language group, click Language. Click Set Proofing Language. In the Language dialog box, select the Detect language automatically check box.
To say “write” in Spanish, you simply use the verb “escribir.” Here's how it's conjugated: Yo escribo = I write. Tú escribe = You write. Él/ella/Ud.
Holding the "Ctrl" key plus a punctuation key and the letter will insert the marked letter on your document. Diacritics include the acute, grave and circumflex accents. These keyboard shortcuts will help you display text more accurately in your business documents.What is the Alt code for ñ? ›
The lowercase ñ can be made in the Microsoft Windows operating system by typing Alt + 164 or Alt + 0241 on the numeric keypad (with Num Lock turned on); the uppercase Ñ can be made with Alt + 165 or Alt + 0209 .How do you do accents on a keyboard? ›
Hold the Control key down, then tap the accent key near the top left corner of your keypad. Release the keys. Then select the desired letter to accent. The accent key is usually on the same key as the ~.What language uses Ã? ›
A with tilde (majuscule: Ã, minuscule: ã) is a letter of the Latin alphabet formed by addition of the tilde diacritic over the letter A. It is used in Portuguese, Guaraní, Kashubian, Taa, Aromanian, and Vietnamese. In the past, it was also used in Greenlandic.What is the triangle over a letter called? ›
The circumflex (◌̂) is a diacritic in the Latin and Greek scripts that is also used in the written forms of many languages and in various romanization and transcription schemes. It received its English name from Latin: circumflexus "bent around"—a translation of the Greek: περισπωμένη (perispōménē).What are the 7 special keys in keyboard? ›
- Ctrl-S - save.
- Ctrl-O - open.
- Ctrl-N - new.
- Ctrl-C - copy.
- Ctrl-V - paste.
- Ctrl-X - cut.
- Ctrl-Z - undo.
- Ctrl-A - select all.
The US International Keyboard gives you two ways to add a special character: Use the right-hand Alt key in combination with the appropriate letter to get one of the more common combinations. For example, Alt+e will result in: é Press the symbol you want to use and then the letter you want to use it with.What are special symbols on the keyboard? ›
|`||Acute, backquote, backtick, grave, grave accent, left quote, open quote, or a push.|
|!||Exclamation mark, exclamation point, or bang.|
|@||Ampersat, arobase, asperand, at, or at symbol.|
|#||Octothorpe, number, pound, sharp, or hash.|
Although the letters ⟨k⟩ and ⟨w⟩ are part of the alphabet, they appear only in loanwords such as karate, kilo, waterpolo and wolframio (tungsten or wolfram) and in sensational spellings: okupa, bakalao.What is the 27th letter in the Spanish alphabet? ›
|#||Letter (Upper Case)||Pronunciation (Name of the Letter)|
|24||W||uve doble / doble u|
|26||Y||ye, i griega|
Example. To input the acute a á (0225), hold down the ALT key, type 0225 on the numeric keypad, then release the ALT key.How do I type e with an accent on my keyboard? ›
é: Press Ctrl and type "'" (apostrophe). Release both keys and type "e". à-è-ù: Press Ctrl and type "`" key (left-hand side, top of the keyboard). Release both keys and type "e", "a", or "u".What is the best Spanish accent? ›
In general discussion, 'best' usually means an accent that is clearly spoken, with proper annunciation, and easily understood across the Spanish-speaking world. Some people claim that for these reasons, Colombia has the best Spanish accent. Others say that Peru and Ecuador have the best Spanish accent.How do I learn Spanish fast? ›
- Build A Sizeable Vocabulary In Spanish. Words are the building blocks of a language. ...
- Take A Self-Study Spanish Course. ...
- Find A Spanish Tutor Online. ...
- Don't Obsess Over Spanish Grammar. ...
- Read Spanish As Much As Possible. ...
- Make Spanish Part Of Your Lifestyle. ...
- Don't Travel Abroad To Learn Spanish!
In this section, I am referring to Spanish spoken in Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Colombia. These dialects are often considered easier to understand, and the Colombian accent has been called the “most neutral Spanish accent.” That's because in this region, people speak Spanish more slowly and don't cut words.How do you pronounce è? ›
→ “é” always sounds like \e\ (“ey” in “hey.”) The rising mark on top is called “un accent aigu.” → “è” always sounds like \ɛ\ (“e” in “bet.”) The descending mark on top is called “un accent grave.”How do I type ā? ›
To add a macron to a vowel, on your keyboard, press the top left tilde key (it has these symbols ~ and `) followed by the vowel. 3. To add a macron to an uppercase vowel, press ~, then hold down the shift key and select your vowel.How do you type the U with two dots? ›
Hold down the "Ctrl" and "Shift" keys, and then press the colon key. Release the keys, and then type a vowel in upper or lower case.How do you pronounce E with a line over it? ›
It is commonly found above the letter 'e' in many French words and French borrowings in English, such as exposé, where it indicates that the 'e' is pronounced as a long 'a' and where it can serve to distinguish the word from another with the same spelling (compare English's expose).
- Hold down the letter you want to add an accent to for several seconds. ...
- Press the number key for the version you want to use on the keyboard. ...
- For the uppercase version of the character, press the Shift key before you type and hold the letter you want to accent.
Most text editors and word processors allow you to type special symbols that do not appear on the keyboard, including foreign language characters and accents. To access these, use the numeric keypad on the right side of your keyboard. Make sure the NumLock key is on, and then hold the Alt key.Where do I find symbols on my keyboard? ›
Hold the "Alt" key and type the proper ASCII code on the numeric keypad. When you release the "Alt" key, you should see your desired symbol on the screen.How do I switch languages on my keyboard? ›
- On your Android phone or tablet, open the Settings app.
- Tap System. Languages & input.
- Under "Keyboards," tap Virtual keyboard.
- Tap Gboard. Languages.
- Pick a language.
- Turn on the layout you want to use.
- Tap Done.
The lowercase ñ can be made in the Microsoft Windows operating system by typing Alt + 164 or Alt + 0241 on the numeric keypad (with Num Lock turned on); the uppercase Ñ can be made with Alt + 165 or Alt + 0209 .How do you type accents on a keyboard? ›
Keyboard shortcuts to add language accent marks in Word and Outlook.
|To insert this||Press|
|á, é, í, ó, ú, ý Á, É, Í, Ó, Ú, Ý||CTRL+' (APOSTROPHE), the letter|
|â, ê, î, ô, û Â, Ê, Î, Ô, Û||CTRL+SHIFT+^ (CARET), the letter|
Unlike iOS, Android doesn't come preloaded with support for accented characters. However, there's an app for that—several of them, actually. Simply head to your app store and search for a “smart keyboard.” Choose whichever you like best, install it, then type accents, acute or otherwise, whenever you need.How do I configure my keyboard keys? ›
To reassign a key
Connect the keyboard that you want to configure. Select the Start button, and then select Microsoft Mouse and Keyboard Center. From the displayed list of key names, select the key that you want to reassign. In the command list of the key that you want to reassign, select a command.
Changing the Layout of the Keys
For languages using the Latin alphabet, there are three main key layouts: QWERTY, QWERTZ, and AZERTY.
- Select the Start > Settings > Time & language > Language & region.
- Select the language that has the keyboard you want, then select Options.
- Select Add a keyboard and choose the keyboard you want to add. ...
- Return to the Language settings page, go to Preferred languages, then select Add a language.
In the Portuguese language, the symbol Õ stands for a nasal close-mid back rounded vowel, also written [õ] in IPA. It is not considered an independent letter of the alphabet: the tilde is the standard diacritic for nasalization.How do I type Spanish accents? ›
Most new mobile phones, across both Apple and Android operating systems, will allow you to type an accented letter simply by long-pressing on the letter on the keypad. The various options for that letter will appear in a small box, and you can make a selection.How do you type fancy e? ›
"É" can be typed by pressing Alt + 1 4 4 or Alt + 0 2 0 1 . On US International and UK English keyboard layouts, users can type the acute accent letter "é" by typing AltGR + E . This method can also be applied to many other acute accented letters which do not appear on the standard US English keyboard layout.How do you put symbols above letters? ›
Holding the "Ctrl" key plus a punctuation key and the letter will insert the marked letter on your document. Diacritics include the acute, grave and circumflex accents. These keyboard shortcuts will help you display text more accurately in your business documents.How do you type the U with an accent? ›
To insert: Upper case U with an acute accent (Ú), press Ctrl + ' and then type capital letter U. Lower case u with an acute accent (ú), press Ctrl + ' and then type lower case u. Upper case U with a grave accent (Ù), press Ctrl + ` and then type capital letter U.How do you type alternate letters? ›
Typing the alternate character on a key
To type the alternate character on a key, press the right Alt key and the desired key. For example, type Alt + E to type € on a French or German keyboard.
→ “é” always sounds like \e\ (“ey” in “hey.”) The rising mark on top is called “un accent aigu.” → “è” always sounds like \ɛ\ (“e” in “bet.”) The descending mark on top is called “un accent grave.”How do I type an I with two dots? ›
Hold down the "Ctrl" and "Shift" keys, and then press the colon key. Release the keys, and then type a vowel in upper or lower case.How do I make the N with an accent? ›
For example, to get the character ñ, press the Ctrl and Shift Keys while pressing the ~ key (tilde key). Then, release all three keys and quickly press the n key.