Main tutorials

This tutorial provides an introduction to MathType Desktop's system of styles. We will demonstrate how to change the fonts in your equations by changing style definitions. Using styles will allow you to achieve the formatting you want quickly and easily, and enable you to create equations with a consistent appearance. See Style menu for more information about styles, fonts and sizes.

In the following steps, we will create the equation

and experiment with changing the look of the equation by using different style definitions. This animation shows a summary of what you'll be doing in this tutorial:

Make sure you're in Math style

Verify the Status Bar's Style panel displays "Math". If it doesn't, choose Math from the Style menu. If the Math style is not chosen, MathType's automatic style assignment will not be in effect, and the rest of this tutorial will not make much sense.

Create the equation

Create the equation, using the reduced-size fraction template for the fraction and inserting ϕ and σ by choosing them from the lowercase Greek palette, or by using the Ctrl+G/+G shortcut. (If you use the shortcut, remember after pressing the initial shortcut – Ctrl+G/+G – you must then press the letter associated with the Greek symbol you want. In this case that's either f or s, respectively.) The • operator is located on the palette. The equation should now look like this:

Define the styles

From the Style menu, choose Define. If necessary, click the Simple button to display this dialog:

Change the "Primary font" to Euclid, change the "Greek and math fonts" to Euclid Symbol and Euclid Extra, as shown in the dialog above, and then click Apply. On screen, your equation will now look like this:

The Euclid fonts supplied with MathType Desktop are based on the Computer Modern fonts typically used with TeX so they give your documents a TeX-like appearance that you might prefer for some types of work. Another benefit of the Euclid fonts is that their regular and Greek characters have a consistent size, whereas Times and Symbol are somewhat mismatched. Of course, if you use the Euclid fonts in your equations, you will probably want to use Euclid as the primary body font in your word processing document, too.

The TeX look
We've included a MathType Preference File named TeXLook.eqp that contains font and spacing settings that make MathType equations look like TeX. It's in the Preferences folder inside your MathType Desktop folder. See Preferences menu for more details on using preference files.

Return to Default Settings

If the Define Styles dialog isn't still open, open it. Click Default Settings (some versions: "Defaults"; others, "Factory settings") to return to using the Times New Roman and Symbol fonts.

Advanced settings

Click the Advanced button to display a more extensive form of the Define Styles dialog:

The changes you make in this dialog apply to the current equation. Check "Use for new equations" to use the settings for new equations as well.

The names of the eleven styles are listed in the dialog box, together with the font and character style assigned to each. The equation you have just created uses the Function, Variable, L.C. Greek, Number, and Symbol styles. The letters "exp" are recognized as the abbreviation for the exponential function, and are assigned the Function style; u, x, and y are treated as variables and assigned the Variable style; φ and σ being lowercase Greek letters, are assigned the L.C. (lowercase) Greek style, and the numbers in the fraction use the Number style. The symbols =, •, (, ), and + use the Symbol style. (The fraction bar is internal to MathType and does not use a style.) These styles are applied automatically as you create the equation, because you are using the Math style. This automatic style assignment is the advantage you gain by using the Math style when creating equations.

More about styles

The subject of MathType's styles is covered in more detail in Style menu.

We're going to change some of the styles so you understand how they affect an equation's appearance. Normally you wouldn't work this way; you'd change fonts using the Simple version of this dialog.

Set font for Function style

The Function style is currently defined to use Times New Roman font. Click the arrow to the right of the font name in the Function row and choose a different font. You will want to choose a font that looks noticeably different from Times New Roman, so the effect of the change will be obvious. A good choice would be a sans serif font such as Arial.

See the effect of the style change

Choose the OK button. Your equation will be redisplayed using the new Function style definition. Your equation should look like this if you chose Arial font for Function style:

The function abbreviation exp is displayed using the new font. Of course, you probably wouldn't want your equation to look like this – we're simply demonstrating the effect of changing the Function style definition.

The Variable style definition is used for all ordinary alphabetic characters except for the ones in function abbreviations. In the current equation, this includes u, x, and y. Very often, according to convention, the only difference you want between the Variable and Function styles is for the Variable style to be defined as italic. Let's redefine the Variable style so that it's consistent with the new Function style definition.

Choosing fonts
A fast way to select a font is to click the list and then type the first letter of the name. You can also use the scroll bar in the list to move around quickly.

Set other styles

Once again, choose Define from the Style menu. In the Define Styles dialog box, click the arrow next to font name for Variable style, and choose the same font assigned to the Function style. Check that the italic character style is checked for Variable, but not for Function.

Let's also change the Number style so that it uses the same font as Function and Variable. You will find that this makes the equation look better. Finally, turn off the italic character style for the L.C. Greek style by removing the check in the Character Style column. Lowercase Greek letters are usually italicized, but let's experiment with this. Note that for the the Symbol style you can only assign fonts with the same encoding (arrangement of characters) as the Symbol font. This typically restricts your choice to the Symbol font, the Euclid Symbol font, or some other similar font.

See the effect of the style change

Click OK. Your equation will be redisplayed using the new style definitions. If you are using the fonts we've recommended, the equation should now look like this:

The "variables" u, x, and y, and the numbers in the fraction ½ now use the new font definitions, and the lower-case Greek letters φ and σ are no longer italicized. You may want to use style definitions such as these for equations in a document in which the text is written in Arial.

To reset the style definitions, open the Define Styles dialog and click "Default settings" (some versions: "Factory settings").

You can also double-click or right-click in the Style panel of the Status Bar to make the Style menu appear.

While working through this tutorial, you have probably noticed that each of the styles is also listed as a command on the Style menu. This allows you to explicitly assign a particular style to selected or subsequently-typed characters. The Other command on the Style menu can be used to assign any font available on your computer to selected or subsequently-typed characters. See Style menu for further details.

In our next tutorial, we show you how to enter words and phrases in an equation, and also how to handle function name abbreviations that MathType does not recognize. We are going to create the following equation:

Begin the equation

First, open a new MathType Desktop window using one of the methods you've already learned. Then type Prob(A|B). The result will be

Using its built-in table of function names, MathType has recognized Pr as an abbreviation for "probability" and set it in the Function style, while o and b are regarded as variables. In this tutorial, we want to use Prob, rather than just Pr, as our abbreviation for "probability". You might think that you can fix the problem by just making the o and b non-italic, but we don't recommend this. If you simply remove the italicization, MathType will still regard o and b as variables, which is not what we intend. The right approach is to select Prob and choose Function from the Style menu. This will remove the italics, but it also tells MathType that Prob is the name of a function, which will affect spacing and translation into languages such as LaTeX and MathML.

Controlling italics
To assign regular (non-italic) style to function names, use Function on the Style menu, rather than just removing the italics.

Create a fraction

Create the fraction in the middle term of the equation. You can copy and paste Prob(A|B), and modify it for re-use in the numerator and denominator. You can find ∩, the set intersection symbol, on the palette. Your equation should now look like

Copying and dragging
To re-use part of an existing equation, select the part and then use Copy and Paste, or drag and drop. If you press and hold Ctrl (Mac: ) when dragging, it makes a copy of the selection.

Create another fraction

Construct the fraction on the right side of the equation by using the template again. The insertion point will be positioned in the numerator, ready to type the text.

Typing text
Before typing normal words and phrases, choose Text from the Style menu.

Choose Text style

If you just start typing characters into the numerator slot, MathType will assume that they are variables, so they will be italicized, and any spaces you type will be ignored. To type ordinary words and phrases, you should first choose Text from the Style menu. Then type Probability that both A and B occur. The numerator of our fraction will look like this:

This is what we want, except the word "both" should be bold and the A and B should be italic.

Change both to bold

Select the word "both", and choose Other from the Style menu. The Other Style dialog will appear, which lets you directly change the font and style (bold & italic) of selected characters. Click Bold, and then OK.

Make A and B italic

Next we want to make the variables A and B italic. We could do this directly by using Other from the Style menu again, but this would not really convey the correct meaning. A better approach is to select the variable A and choose Math from the Style menu, and then repeat for the variable B. This makes the A and B italic, but also tells MathType to treat them as mathematical variables.

Type the denominator

Enter the denominator of the fraction using the same technique we used for the numerator.

This completes the equation, but we can use it to illustrate a few more of MathType Desktop's capabilities.

New function names
You can customize the list of functions that MathType Desktop automatically recognizes.

If you use the abbreviation "Prob" for probability on a regular basis, you'll get tired of manually changing it to Function style all the time, and you'll want MathType to do this for you automatically. From the Preferences menu, choose Functions Recognized. Type Prob as the name of a new function, and click the Add button. Also, if you don't want MathType to recognize Pr as an abbreviation for "probability", you can select Pr in the list of recognized functions and click the Remove button.

Now try recreating this same equation, to see how much easier it is.

In the previous tutorials we saw two formulas that were very similar, in the sense that they had many terms in common. This is typical of many branches of mathematics. For example, consider these formulas from elementary statistics:

Many statistical formulae use the symbols μ and σ, and they often involve various combinations of terms like , , and . When dealing with repetitive formulae like these you can save yourself a great deal of time by customizing MathType. To save time creating statistical formulae, we're going to place σ in the Small Bar. We'll also make expressions for and , and place them in the tabbed bars. Then we'll use them to create the second of the equations shown above.

Toolbar icon sizes
Using the Workspace Preferences command on the Preferences menu you can alter the size of the toolbar icons.

Here's how to add those symbols and expressions to the customizable toolbar:

Toolbars should be visible

Before we start, make sure that MathType Desktop's toolbar is visible and that the Small Bar and the Small and Large Tabbed Bars are visible. Use the commands in the View menu to make them visible if necessary.

Open the Greek characters (lowercase) palette

Click the symbol palette, and then release the mouse button. The palette will appear.

Add σ to the Small Bar

Now hold down Alt ( on the Mac), click σ and, keeping the left mouse button down, drag it over the Small Bar. You'll see the mouse pointer change shape as it passes over different areas of the toolbar. When the pointer looks like this , the dragged item cannot be dropped at this location and releasing the mouse button will have no effect. When the pointer looks like this on Windows or like this on a Mac, it is over a valid target area and releasing the mouse button will insert the object at this location. Now release the mouse button over the Small Bar, as shown here:

The symbol will be added to the end of the bar. Now to insert this symbol into an equation you only need click it in the Small Bar instead of hunting for it in the palettes. The Small Bar is a good location for frequently used symbols as it is always available and can contain many items.

Adding new symbols

You can add any symbol from any font on your computer to the toolbar. Enter it into the equation area, select it, and drag it to the toolbar. Use the Insert Symbol dialog (on the Edit menu – see Inserting symbols that aren't in the palettes for details) to locate the symbol, hold down the Alt key and drag the symbol to the toolbar. As a result, MathType Desktop has access to a virtually limitless supply of symbols.

You can add any symbol from any font on your computer to the toolbar. Enter it into the equation area, select it, and drag it to the toolbar. Use the Insert Symbol dialog (on the Edit menu – see Inserting symbols that aren't in the palettes for details) to locate the symbol, hold down the Alt key and drag the symbol to the toolbar. As a result, MathType Desktop has access to a virtually limitless supply of symbols.</callout>

Add an expression to the Large Tabbed Bar

Next, we're going to add to the Large Tabbed Bar. The tabbed bars are similar to the Small Bar in how they operate, however they're divided into categories, which allows for a much larger number of items. Click the Statistics tab to display MathType Desktop's default items for statistical equations. There should be room for one more item in the Large Tabbed Bar (the bar has room for 8 items). If there isn't, select another tab that does have room.

Create the expression

Delete the current contents of the MathType Desktop window, and create in the usual way. You'll need to use the template (not the template or the symbol) to do this.

Editing toolbar expressions
You can edit a toolbar expression by double-clicking if you're on Windows. Alternatively, on either Windows or Mac you can edit a toolbar expression by right-clicking and choosing Edit (Windows) or Edit Expression (Mac). A new MathType Desktop window will open containing the expression. Make your changes, close the window, save the changes, and the toolbar will be updated.

Select and drag expression to Large Tabbed Bar

To add this expression to the toolbar, select it and drag it to the Large Tabbed Bar. When you release the mouse you'll see the expression appear in the bar.

Add fraction to Small Tabbed Bar

Create , and drag this expression to the Small Tabbed Bar. You can make the fraction full size, using the template, or you can make a case fraction using the template. When you're done, we're ready to create the formula

Tips & reminders

Creating this formula doesn't require any new techniques, so we're not going to give you the usual step-by-step instructions. Here are a few useful hints and reminders:

  • You can insert σ by clicking on it in the Small Bar, which is much faster than using the palette.
  • You can insert the by clicking it in the Large Tabbed Bar.
  • A fast way to create is to insert , drag across the X to select it, and type Y to replace it.
  • You can create by inserting and replacing the subscript template with a sub/superscript template. To do this, select the entire subscript slot (not simply the subscript itself; see inset note below), and hold down Ctrl as you choose from the Subscript and Superscript templates palette. The Ctrl ( on Mac) key causes the new template to replace the selected one instead of wrapping around it. Then type 2 in the superscript slot.
    Note that if your selection looks like this, it will not work:
    Selection must extend vertically past the base:
  • Note that the two terms inside curly brackets on the bottom line of the formula are identical except that one involves X and the other involves Y. To create the second term, just duplicate the first one and replace the Xs with Ys.
  • You can duplicate a term by selecting it, holding down Ctrl ( on Mac) and dragging it to the desired location (without Ctrl/, the term is moved).
    Rearranging the toolbar
    MathType Desktop's toolbar is initially filled with expressions useful for many of the various fields in mathematics. You can, however, rename or delete the existing tabs, as well as rearrange or remove any of the symbols or expressions that are in the default toolbar. You can also modify any of the expressions if they're not quite right for your particular use.

    To move a symbol or expression within the toolbar, hold Alt (Mac:  ) and drag the item to its new location. You can insert an item between two others by dropping it between them.

Try it

Try this by dragging σ from the Small Bar (Step 3 above) to the Small Tabbed Bar. The choice of where to place an item is entirely up to you; a symbol or expression can be placed in any of the bars.

Now let's delete σ from the Small Tabbed Bar.

Deleting symbols and expressions from the toolbar

Right-click σ and select Delete from the context menu that appears. You may also want to delete the other expressions you added to the tabbed bars.

Deleting toolbar items (Windows only)
Another way to delete an item in MathType Desktop for Windows is to Alt+Drag it from the bar and release the mouse over an invalid target, e.g., outside the MathType window.

Change the names of the tabs

You can also change the names of the tabs to suit your particular situation. Double-click the Statistics tab to open the Tab Properties dialog, where you can edit the tab's name and change its keyboard shortcut.

If you prefer typing to using the mouse, you may want to use the toolbar's keyboard interface. You can give the keyboard focus to a toolbar component using the following keyboard commands:

Palette or Bar Windows Mac
Symbol Palette F5 +F5
Template Palette F6 +F6
Small Bar F7 +F7
Large Tabbed Bar F8 +F8
Small Tabbed Bar F9 +F6

Once a bar has the focus, you can use and to move the selection, and Enter to insert the selected item (or open its corresponding menu). Esc closes a menu, or returns the focus to the equation area. You can switch tabs by typing Ctrl+F10 (+F10 on Mac), n where n is the number of the tab to activate. For example, typing Ctrl+F10, 2 activates the second tab.

Deciding what to place in the toolbar

Some symbols and templates are used so frequently that you may not need to place them in the toolbar. You probably will have memorized the keyboard shortcuts for inserting them, so there's not much to be gained by having them occupy valuable space in the toolbar. Greek symbols in particular fall into this category; once you've learned that you can insert a β by pressing Ctrl+G or +G followed by B (referred to as Ctrl+G,B on Windows or Command+G,B on Mac), you probably won't need to add these characters to the toolbar.

Keyboard shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts are covered in more detail in Customizing the keyboard.

It may make sense, however, to add characters from any special fonts you may have to the toolbar. The easiest method is to use the Insert Symbol dialog (choose the Insert Symbol command on the Edit menu), which is an extremely powerful tool for viewing the characters in a font. You can also Alt+Drag or +Drag characters from this dialog to the toolbar. You can add as many characters from your fonts to the toolbar as will fit. Then you can enter these characters at any time into your equations, regardless of your current style definitions.

Insert Symbol dialog
Using this dialog is covered in more detail in Inserting symbols that aren't in the palettes.

That does it for Using MathType's Toolbar, so choose Select All (Ctrl+A/+A) from the Edit menu and press Backspace or Delete to clear the window for the next tutorial.

In our next example we introduce some of MathType's facilities for controlling spacing and alignment in equations. We are going to create the following pair of equations:

Note that these equations are arranged so that their less than or equal to signs are vertically aligned, and they both contain a "lim sup" construction of a type that we have not used before.

Expanding integrals
Integral signs are normally a constant size. You can create an expanding integral by holding down Shift while you choose an integral template from the integrals palette.

You can create these equations like this:

Insert a definite integral

Insert a definite integral template by clicking or by using the Ctrl+I/+I shortcut. Type the integrand (the large slot), and fill in the 0 and 1 as the limits of integration (the two small slots). You probably won't want the parentheses in the integrand to be of the "expanding" variety, so you can just type them from the keyboard, rather than using the template. Your equation should now look like this:

Add a thin space

To improve the appearance of our equation, we should insert a thin space (one sixth of an em) in-between a(x) and dx in the integrand. MathType Desktop can not do this automatically, so we provide you with a convenient way of manually entering a space of the correct size.

Parentheses template
You may prefer to use the template instead of typing ( and ). Using the template can give your document a more consistent look. The template also includes more space around it, so you may not need to add the thin space as shown here. We're trying to teach you the different ways to create equations; obviously the final choice is up to you!

The palette provides a set of five icons representing commonly used spaces. Place the insertion point between the ")" and the "d" by clicking there, and insert a thin space either by choosing (it's on the left column in the second row of the spaces and ellipses palette) or by pressing Ctrl+Spacebar (shortcut is the same Win/Mac).

Move out of the integrand

Move the insertion point out of the integrand slot, into the position shown below. You must do this for the alignment commands to work properly. Don't create the rest of the equation within the integrand slot.

Show Nesting
The Show Nesting command on the View menu shows the different slots and can help you avoid making mistakes.

Inequality symbol

Click ≤ in the Small Bar.

Enable the underscript

Now we want to build the "lim sup" structure. We begin by clicking the icon in the Palette. This icon represents an underscript template: any characters entered in the upper slot will be full size, and those in the lower slot will be reduced to "subscript" size.

Type lim sup

The insertion point is positioned in the upper slot, so you can type limsup. MathType will use your "Function" style (probably a plain style) for these characters, and will insert a thin space between the "lim" and the "sup".

Type the underscript

Move the insertion point down into the lower slot by clicking in it or by pressing the Tab key, and enter n→∞. The → and ∞ symbols are very common in mathematics, so they've been added to MathType Desktop's default Small Bar. They're also available in the Symbol Palettes, of course. Following typesetting conventions (as always), MathType will not create any spacing around the → symbol, since it is in an underscript, but you can insert spaces if you want to.

Move out of the underscript

Press Tab to move the insertion point out of the lower slot, and type the rest of this first equation. The speedy way to do this is to just type Ctrl+G f Ctrl+L n Tab ( a ). If you like the Ctrl+G shortcut, you may be interested to know there are a few others that work in a similar fashion. If you press Ctrl+U, for example, the next character you type will be assigned the User 1 style that you have defined with the Define command on the Style menu. In this way, you can access any character in any font with just two keystrokes, even if it's not present in the Symbol Palettes.

One-shot shortcuts
The shortcuts that affect just the next character typed are described in more detail in Keyboard modifiers (one-shots).

Create a pile

Press Enter. This will create a new line directly beneath the first equation, so now you have a "pile" consisting of two lines. It should look like this:

Selecting a slot
You can double-click in a slot to select its contents, or type Ctrl+Shift+S.

Copy & paste within MathType

To save time, we're going to create the second equation by modifying a copy of the first one. Select the entire first equation by double-clicking somewhere near its ≤ sign, copy it to the clipboard, and then paste it into the new empty slot. You should now have two identical copies of the first equation, one directly beneath the other. Now just edit the lower copy to produce the second equation. To change ϕ to ψ, select ϕ and press Ctrl+G/+G followed by y.

Different alignments

Finally, we're going to experiment with some different ways of aligning the two equations. You can center or right-justify them by using the Align Center and Align Right commands on the Format menu. Give this a try, just to see how it looks.

Align at =

In fact, you will probably want to align these two equations so that their ≤ signs are directly above one another. To do this, we choose the Align at = command from the Format menu. It will work even though we have ≤ signs rather than = signs. You can align the equations in other ways by using alignment symbols. You simply insert an alignment symbol in each equation at the two points that you'd like to have aligned. (However, note that alignment symbols inserted into template slots will not work.) Placing an alignment symbol to the right of each of the two ≤ signs would give the same results as using the Align at = command, for instance. The alignment symbol is represented by the icon in the Symbol Palettes - it's located in the palette.

Adjust line spacing

You may also want to adjust the line spacing, or leading, (i.e., the amount of vertical space between the two equations). You can do this by placing the insertion point somewhere in the outermost slot of the second equation (not within a template), or by selecting the second equation, and choosing the Line Spacing command from the Format menu. When you've arranged them to your liking, the equations are complete.

Now that we're done with these equations, it's time to choose Select All from the Edit menu and press Backspace to clear your window for the next tutorial.

In our next tutorial, we illustrate MathType's powerful capabilities for laying out matrices. We will construct the following matrix equation:

The matrix is a fairly simple one, and we'll be able to create it very easily by using a matrix template. If you need more flexible formatting capabilities for matrices and tabular layouts, you should use tabs, as illustrated in Formatting with tabs.

Begin the equation

Type the first few terms of the equation, up to the second equals sign. MathType will recognize that "det" is an abbreviation for the determinant function, and will automatically set it in plain Roman type, so you don't have to fiddle with it. The quick way to get λ is to press Ctrl+G/+G followed by a letter l (lower-case L). Also, note the I and the A represent matrices in our equation, so we have assigned them the Vector-Matrix style. This causes them to appear in bold type. The Ctrl+B shortcut will assign the Vector-Matrix style to the next character, so you can press Ctrl+B followed by I to get the I, and Ctrl+B followed by A for the A. Alternatively, you can just type all the characters first, and then select them and change their styles using the commands on the Style menu. Either way, your equation should end up looking like this:

Vertical bars

Type the second = sign and insert a vertical bar template by choosing the icon. It's located in the palette.

Insert 2×2 matrix

Insert a 2×2 matrix template inside the vertical bars by choosing the icon from the palette. Your equation should now look like this:

Begin entering matrix contents

The insertion point will be in the top left slot of the 2×2 matrix, so enter the expression λ – a11 there.

Copy & paste matrix elements

We're feeling lazy, so we're going to create the other entries in the matrix by cutting and pasting. Select the λ – a11 by double-clicking it, copy it to the clipboard, and paste it into the other three slots in the matrix. The result should be as shown below; it's not correct, of course, but we're going to fix it up in a few moments.

Drag and drop
You can also drag the term and drop it in the other slots. Remember to hold down the Ctrl/ key as you drag to copy the term.

Add some padding

Next, we're going to put a little extra space between the vertical bars and the elements of the matrix. This is purely a matter of taste, so you can skip this part if you'd prefer to keep your matrix looking the way it does at present. Before we enter the spaces, we need to position the insertion point so that it's inside the vertical bars but to the left of and outside the matrix. You can do this by clicking somewhere near the position indicated by the arrow pointer in the preceding picture. Then just enter one or two thin spaces by pressing Ctrl+Spacebar/+Spacebar. Do the same on the right side of the matrix. If you choose the Show All command from the View menu, you'll be able to see your spaces. They should look like this:

Correct the pasted entries

After the brief digression in Step 6, it's now time to correct the entries in our matrix. First, delete the λ from the upper right slot. The quickest way to do this is to place the insertion point to the right of it and press Backspace. Do the same with λ in the lower left slot. Notice MathType adjusts the spacing after the minus signs to reflect the fact that they are now unary operators rather than binary operators (negation rather than subtraction).

Continue correcting the entries

Change all the subscripts in the matrix to their desired values. The "11" in the upper left slot is correct already, but we should have "12" in the upper right slot, "21" in the lower left, and "22" in the lower right. You can double-click the existing subscripts to select them, and then type the correct values over them, just as you would in a word processor. Your equation should now look like this:

Modifying a matrix
The Matrix submenu on the Format menu contains commands for adding and deleting rows and columns.

Nearly finished…

The equation is now essentially complete, although there are a few more formatting options you may want to try out. First, you might want to shift the entire matrix down so that its top row is aligned with the rest of the equation. To do this, place the insertion point anywhere in the matrix and choose Align at Top from the Format menu. Also, it might be nice to right justify the entries in each column. To do this, place the insertion point somewhere in the matrix, choose the Change Matrix command from the Matrix submenu on the Format menu, and click the button labeled "Right" in the dialog box.

Finally, if you object to the fact that MathType tightened the spacing after the unary minus signs, you can put the spaces back in again, though this would mean deviating from standard typesetting conventions. They should be thick spaces (one third of an em). The thick space is the middle one in the second row of the spaces and ellipses palette. If you prefer to use the keyboard, you can insert a thick space by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Space/+Shift+Space. Alternatively, since a thick space is the same width as two thin spaces, you can get the same results by pressing Ctrl+Space/+Space twice.

If you elected to make all of the modifications suggested in this step, your equation should look something like this:

If you're going on to the next tutorial, press Ctrl+Alt/+Alt to select all, then press Backspace or Delete to clear your screen.

This tutorial describes how to use the MathType commands for numbering equations in Microsoft Word documents. Although Word has its own method for numbering equations (captions), Word places captions above or below an item, not to the side, which is typically how equations are numbered. Using the MathType commands that are added to Word, you can enter inline, display and numbered display equations with just one click.

Same Windows and Mac

Note the process described here is the same on both Windows and Mac platforms. Look on the MathType tab in Word's ribbon for the commands we describe below unless you are using Word 2011 for Mac. In that version, you can find the icons on the floating MathType toolbar, and the commands in the MathType menu on Word's menu bar.

We're going to create the following portion of a document to illustrate the equation numbering commands.

However, we're going to create it in a slightly unrealistic sequence, in order to illustrate the power and flexibility of the numbering commands.

Begin a new document

Run Microsoft Word and create a new document. Enter the following text: We now have two basic equations:

Insert a right-numbered display equation

Click the button on Word's MathType tab.

Beginning chapter/section break

A dialog will appear asking if you want to create a new chapter/section break at the start of this document. We'll explain the meaning of this later in the tutorial. For now, just click OK.

Word styles used
The line containing the equation is formatted with Word's MTDisplayEquation style, which you can modify to affect all display equations in your document.

Create the first equation

In the MathType Desktop window that opens, type this equation:

Close the MathType window. In your Word document, notice that the equation is centered and the equation number is aligned with the right margin.

Create another numbered equation

Repeat step 3 and insert the following equation into your Word document:

Add text

Enter the following text at the start of the next line: Subtracting

Insert an equation reference

Now let's insert a reference to the second display equation. Click the button on the MathType tab. The Insert Equation Reference dialog will appear, displaying brief instructions about inserting an equation number reference. Once you are familiar with the process you can click the Don't show me again box. For now, click OK, then double-click the equation number (1.2). You'll see the number (1.2) is inserted into your sentence.

Equation references
  • You can jump to an equation in your document quickly by double-clicking on any of its references. Then press Shift+F5 to jump back to the reference.
  • In large documents try splitting your window into two panes (search for split in Word's Help). Insert the references in one pane and scroll and double-click the equation numbers in the other.
  • You can place equation number references in footnotes and endnotes.

Continue the reference

Type from and then enter a reference to equation (1.1) using the method described in the previous step. You may want to enter a space before and after the reference.

Continue with another numbered equation

Type gives and insert the following numbered display equation:

More text and another reference

At the start of the following line, type Using and insert a reference to equation (1.3). Complete the line by typing we can show that

Inline equation

Click the button on Word's MathType tab and insert the following equation:

Notice how this equation is inserted in the line of text (hence the name inline equation). Word also aligns the equation with the baseline of the text. Your document should now look like this:

Now we'll insert another equation in the middle of this example to demonstrate automatic renumbering.

More text

Place the insertion point before the word Subtracting, and enter the following text (it's not necessary to press Enter): Adding these two together, we obtain

Another numbered equation

Insert this numbered display equation:

You'll see the new equation is numbered (1.3), and the following equation number and its reference have been renumbered to (1.4). Your document should now look like the example at the start of this tutorial.

Equation numbers
If you've already inserted a display equation without the number, you can insert just the number using the Insert Equation Number command.
If updating is slow
If updating takes too long, uncheck "Update equation numbers automatically" in the Format Equation Numbers dialog. Then use the Update Equation Numbers command to manually update the numbers.

Whenever you insert an equation number or an equation reference, all numbers in the document are updated. However, if you move or delete an equation number, you must use the Update Equation Numbers command on the MathType tab to regenerate the number sequence. It's located here:

Also, be aware that deleting an equation number does not automatically delete any of its references; you'll have to do this yourself. You can find them by using the Update Equation Numbers command, which will cause Word to display an error message in place of each reference. You can then delete them.

Equation number formats
You can also control the format of the equation numbers. Notice the "Format" command in the previous screen shot.

Whole document
To change the format of existing equation numbers you must check the Whole Document checkbox. Otherwise you're only setting the format for the next number(s) you insert.

Formatting equation numbers

Choose the Format Equation Numbers command (shown above). Check the Whole Document checkbox (to change the existing numbers) and change the Enclosure option to <> (angle brackets). The preview shows you the result of your settings. Click OK, and you'll see the equation numbers and references change to the new format. You may want to experiment with some of the settings – there are many possible combinations.

Chapter/Section Breaks

Section Numbers. If you don't want section numbers included, you can turn them off in the Format Equation Numbers dialog.

The default equation number format includes a section number and an equation number, e.g., (1.1). You can also include a chapter number if needed. The chapter and section numbers are determined by the nearest preceding Chapter/Section Break in your document. You insert and modify these breaks using commands on the MathType tab in Word. We already inserted one at the start of this document as part of inserting the first equation number. Now we'll change its value.

Show Chapter/Section Breaks
You can show and hide chapter/section breaks by clicking on the button in Word's Home tab. This shows and hides the MTEquationSection style.

Change section number to 2

Choose the Modify Break command on the MathType tab. It's located here:

The location of the section break will be highlighted and the Modify Chapter/Section Break dialog will open. Let's assume we're working on Section 2 of a book, so we want the section number to be 2 and the equation number to be 1. Choose the "Section number:" button and enter 2. The "Next" option can be useful if your document contains several sections and you want them numbered sequentially. (Remember that there's no link between Word's sections and MathType's chapter/section breaks. It's up to you to associate them by placing the breaks in the appropriate places in your document). Now click OK. The chapter/section break will be hidden, and the equation numbers in the document will all start with 2.

If you've followed these steps your document should look something like this:

MathType's equation numbering commands can also support three levels of numbering, e.g., chapter, section, and equation numbers. You can also control the format of the numbers and create your own custom formats. The next tutorial shows you how to do this; we'll use the document we created in this tutorial so don't delete it!

The simple equation numbering example shown in the previous tutorial is sufficient for many documents, but sometimes you may need to create a third level of numbers. For example your document may require chapter, section, and equation numbers. Or you may find that the built-in number formats don't match your needs and you'd like to create a custom number format. This tutorial shows you how to accomplish both tasks.

Open previous document

Open the document you created in the previous tutorial. If you didn't save it, download ours and use it for this tutorial.

Open Format Equation Numbers dialog

Open the Format Equation Numbers dialog. This is on the MathType tab in Word, in the Equation Numbers group. Click the downward-pointing triangle to the right of Insert Number, and choose Format. (If you are using Word 2011 for Mac, the Format Equation Numbers command is in the MathType menu in Word. Use caution to not choose the similarly-named command Format Equations.)



The dialog will open:

Enable Chapter Number

The settings should appear as shown above. The top group of items controls the number format. We want to add a chapter number, so check the "Chapter Number" checkbox. Notice how the preview changes to <1.1.1>.

Enable Whole document

Make sure "Whole document" is selected so the changes we make will be applied to existing equation numbers. Then click OK.

You'll notice the document has changed, and the equation numbers now read <1.2.1>, <1.2.2> etc. This is because the chapter/section break at the start of the document sets the chapter number to 1. This was added to the document when we inserted the first equation number. Let's pretend we want to set this to be Chapter 2.

Open the Modify Break dialog

Choose the Modify Break command on the MathType tab. It's located here:

You'll see the break itself has also been made visible in the Word document. Here's the dialog:

Change chapter number

Change the Chapter number value to 2 and click OK. The numbers in the document should now read <2.2.1>, <2.2.2> etc.

Now let's try changing the format of the numbers more dramatically. We'll set the format so the numbers read Equation 2.2.1, Equation 2.2.2 etc.

Advanced formatting

Choose the Format Equation Numbers command as described in step 2 above. Select the Advanced Format radio button, and enter Equation #C1.#S1.#E1 in the Format: box. You'll see how the Preview changes.

Make sure "Whole document" is selected, and click OK. The equation numbers in the document should be updated.

You can experiment with different custom formats in this manner. The syntax used for the formats is very simple: all characters are used literally except for the constructs #Cx, #Sx, and #Ex, where x indicates the numeric representation and can be one of 1, a, A, i, I.

A fast way of learning how to control the formatting is to select the Simple Format button, and then change the various options. The Advanced Format text is still visible, and it updates every time you make a change to the built-in formats. Full details are in the Help for this dialog.

When creating a Microsoft Word document containing equations there are several considerations you should keep in mind. You'll probably want the body text to match the equations in terms of fonts and sizes, and you'll typically want all equations in the document to use consistent formatting, i.e. the same font and size settings, as well as any other special settings you may have made in MathType Desktop.

Word's styles
If you're not familiar with Word's styles we urge you to take a few minutes to learn how to use them. In Word's Help, search for styles.

Although Word and MathType allow you to select text and change their fonts and sizes directly, we strongly recommend you make use of styles instead. Both programs use this approach because it makes modifying the look of a document or equation very easy. You simply change the definition of a style (e.g., from Times New Roman to Arial, or from 12 pt plain to 10 pt italic), and your document or equation is immediately reformatted with the new settings.

Let's assume you're required to produce a document where the body font is 10pt Times New Roman. The first step is to define MathType's settings to match the Word document.

Open MathType's Define Styles dialog

In MathType Desktop, open the Define Styles dialog and set the main font to Times New Roman using either the Simple or Advanced pane. Make sure the "Use for new equations" box is checked, and click OK.

Factory Settings
Click "Factory settings" to reset the values to Times New Roman font, 12pt.

Open MathType's Define Sizes dialog

Open the Define Sizes dialog dialog and set the Full size to 10 pt. As the other dimensions are by default expressed as percentages, MathType will calculate them for you. Again, check the "Use for new equations" option, and click OK.

Equation Preferences
The definitions of all the styles, sizes, and spacing used in an equation are referred to collectively as "equation preferences". See Equation Preferences sub-menu for more details.

Attach Equation Preferences to the Word document

Back in Word, choose the Equation Preferences command in the Format group on the MathType tab. Make sure the "MathType's 'New Equation' preferences" option is selected. This means that whenever you create a new equation using the commands on the Insert Equations group, the settings MathType Desktop is currently set to use for new equations are the ones that will be used. Click OK to close this dialog.

You may not always want to rely on MathType's 'New Equation' preferences. If you tend to change MathType's size and style definitions quite often, you may want to create a MathType preference file, and then choose this file in the Set Equation Preferences dialog. This will copy the file's preferences into your Word document, so that no matter what changes you make to MathType Desktop, equations created in your document will always use these preferences.

Create a new style

Now we'll quickly create a Word style for the body of the document. If you're using a Mac, see below, but if you're using Windows, click the Dialog Box Launcher in the lower right corner of the Styles group on the Home tab:

In the lower left corner of the Styles dialog, click New Style:

If you're using a Mac, click Styles Pane on the Home tab: . Now click the New Style button.

Both Windows and Mac: in the Create New Style from Formatting (Mac: New Style) dialog, name the new style "body". You'll probably base it on Word's built-in Normal style. Set the new style's font to Times New Roman 10pt by making the appropriate selections in the Formatting section of the dialog. Don't click OK yet.

Paragraph specs

Open the Format list in the lower left corner of the dialog. Choose Paragraph. On the dialog's Indents and Spacing tab, change the Line Spacing option to Single. Click OK to close the dialog.

Close the dialogs

Click OK to close the New Style dialog, and then click the X (Windows) or red "stoplight" (Mac) to close the Styles dialog if undocked or click the X to close the Styles pane if docked.

You've now configured Word and MathType to use the same font and size definitions, which will make equations closely match the look of the rest of the document. Go ahead and enter a line or two of text and insert a simple equation.

Now let's suppose you have to change the document's font to Garamond. To keep this example simple we won't change the point size, but you'd follow the same steps if this were the case.

These are the changes we need to make:

  • Modify Word's "body" style to use Garamond instead of Times New Roman.
  • Modify MathType's styles to use Garamond instead of Times New Roman.
  • Update the existing equations in the document to use the new font.

The first two steps are very similar to how we originally created the styles and added them to the Word document, so we won't go through them in detail. The first step involves using Word's Style dialog (right-click Body in the Styles group, and choose Modify), the second step requires MathType's Define Styles dialog.

The third step involves the Format Equations command on the MathType tab in Word's ribbon.

Open Format Equations dialog

Choose the Format Equations command, and the Format Equations dialog will appear. This dialog allows you to reformat the equations in your document, and provides you with several ways to determine the equation preferences that are applied. The choices are:

  • The equation preferences already stored in this document.
  • MathType's current equation preferences for new equations.
  • The equation preferences contained in a MathType equation you've copied to the clipboard.
  • The equation preferences contained in a MathType preference file.

For this example click the "MathType's 'New Equation' preferences" button. You can click Preview to get a list of the actual preferences.

See Set Equation Preferences dialog for more details on the other options.

Begin the equation formatting

Click OK and the formatting process will start. This can take anywhere from a few seconds to several minutes depending on the speed of your computer and the number of equations in your document. The command's progress is shown in Word's status bar. When the operation has finished, verify the equations were updated.

In this example we show you how MathType's system of tabs provides extra flexibility for formatting equations. We're going to create the equation:

and then format it several different ways. We proceed as follows:

Create the left side of the equation

Create the expression on the left side of the equals sign. As you know by now, you can choose the template or press Ctrl+L/+L to attach the subscript to the c.

Add a single left brace

Choose the template from the palette to insert an expanding left brace. You should now have the following:

Enter "piece" #1

Enter the top expression in the brace, up to and including the x, and then press Ctrl+Tab (press the Tab key while holding down the Ctrl key, Mac or Windows). If you press the Tab key alone, this will move the insertion point, rather than insert a tab character.

Choosing styles
Another way to choose a style is to right-click in the Style panel of the status bar and select the style from the context menu that appears.

Type the first condition

Choose the Text style from the Style menu and type when n is even. While you're using the Text style, the spacebar is active, so you may type spaces just as you would in a word processor. Choose Show All from the View menu, if it's not already checked, so you can see your tab character, which is displayed as a small diamond. Also, choose Ruler from the View menu if it's not already checked. Your equation should look like this:

Note the tab character causes the phrase "when n is even" to line up beneath the first default tab stop to the right of the x. The default tab stops (indicated by small inverted Ts along the ruler scale) are positioned at half-inch intervals starting at the left side of the current slot. Since we are currently within the main slot of the template, the half-inch intervals are measured from the left edge of this slot, i.e. just to the left of .

Ruler units
Default units for ruler graduations are inches. If you prefer to work in centimeters, points, or picas, double-click the ruler pane to bring up the Ruler Units dialog. Make your choice of ruler units and click OK.

Type the second piece of the function

Press Enter to start a new line underneath the first one, and type in its contents. You should switch back to the Math style to enter 14.3x. Insert a tab character (Ctrl+Tab) after the x, as in the first line. Now switch back to Text again to type when n is odd. Now we have:

Again, the text phrase aligns with the first default tab stop to the right of the x. Note that you have created a two-line pile within the template. Each pile in MathType Desktop has its own tab stops.

Change n to Math style

Select n in the first line and choose Math from the Style menu. This makes MathType interpret n as a mathematical quantity (i.e., a variable), and will therefore apply the Variable style (typically italic). Do the same to the n in the second line.

Set the tab stop

Place the insertion point somewhere within one of the two lines on the right-hand side of the equation, click the tab well, and then click the tab stop pane of the ruler at about the 1½ inch mark to set a left tab stop. This will remove all default tab stops to the left of the new tab stop. Your equation should now be aligned like this:

If this is how we want the equation formatted, then our work is finished. However, there are several other options that are worth exploring.

Align the 2 lines at x

First, we're going to align x in the 2 lines. Insert a tab character (Ctrl+Tab) at the start of each of the two lines. This will cause each line to be shifted so its left side aligns with the left tab stop. The text phrase in each line, since it is separated by another tab character, will align with the first available default tab stop to the right of the x.

Position the conditions

Next, click the tab well, and then click the ruler just to the left of the previous tab stop. This should produce the following results:

You can now change the formatting easily by just dragging the tab stops around on the Tab Well pane of the ruler.

Align the 2 lines at decimal points

Now we're going to align the two decimal points. To prepare for this, first remove the by dragging it downward away from the ruler and then releasing the mouse button. Click the tab well, and then click the ruler at around the one inch mark to set a decimal tab stop. Your equation should end up looking like this:

That's it for this tutorial, so delete your equation to be ready for the next tutorial.

In this tutorial, you'll learn how to use MathType Desktop's Insert Symbol dialog to locate and use symbols that are not readily available in the built-in palettes. Suppose, for example, you are going to be writing a document about some newly-invented operations on sets that are analogous to conventional union and intersection. You will want to find symbols to represent your new set operations, and it would be nice if these were similar to the conventional ∪ and ∩ symbols. Your first attempt might be to use bold versions of the conventional symbols to represent your new operations, like this:

Unfortunately, the bold symbols look too much like the regular ones, so we'll try to find a better solution.

Create the equations

Create the equations as shown above.

Open the Insert Symbol dialog

From MathType Desktop's Edit menu, choose Insert Symbol. The following dialog will appear:

This dialog is somewhat similar to the one in Microsoft Word, the Windows Character Map app, and the Mac Character Viewer, at least one of which you may already know how to use.

You can use the Insert Symbol dialog to browse all the fonts available on your computer, and investigate MathType's knowledge of them. Specifically, you can:

  • Insert a specific character or mathematical symbol into your equation.
  • Add a frequently used symbol to the toolbar.
  • Add a keyboard shortcut for a frequently used symbol.
  • Find a symbol by matching words in its description.

Symbol font

The first place to look for usable symbols is the Symbol font, so select Symbol from the list of fonts near the top of the Insert Symbol dialog. A quick way to locate a font is to click on the list and then type the first letter or two of the font's name. Once you select the font you want, you can scroll through the large grid of characters in the center of the dialog, looking for likely prospects.

Larger symbol display
To enlarge the characters in the Insert Symbol dialog, choose Workspace Preferences from MathType Desktop's Preferences menu, and set Toolbar size to Medium or Large.

Other symbol fonts

You might also look in the Euclid Symbol and Wingdings fonts. Note that the Insert Symbol dialog tells you that Symbol and Euclid Symbol have the same "encoding" (arrangement of characters). So, if you don't find the characters you need in one of these two fonts, you won't find them in the other, either.

Search for a symbol

The Insert Symbol dialog actually provides a more intelligent way to search for the characters you need, rather just browsing through fonts. In the View by field, choose Description. Click the New Search button, type the word union, and choose OK. The grid of characters will now show you several union-like symbols.

When there are too many to show

In the Insert Symbol dialog, uncheck "Show one of each" to see all the characters on your computer that MathType knows about, and which have the word "union" in their names. Depending on which fonts you have installed, there may be a few dozen such characters. If you are overwhelmed by the vast array of characters shown, click "Show one of each" to reduce the number. This causes the dialog to display only one character (from the first font that contains it) for each description matched by the search criteria.

Look for a suitable symbol for union

Click a few of the promising-looking union characters, to see what MathType can tell you about them. Among other things, MathType will give you a description of the character, the font in which it was found, and the corresponding keystroke.

Try the double union symbol

One of the characters you should see is a double union symbol from the Euclid Math Two font. Let's assume that we want to use this, provided we can find a corresponding symbol for intersection.

Now a suitable symbol for intersection

Using the techniques outlined above, search for symbols with "intersection" in their names. You should find a double intersection symbol , again in the Euclid Math Two font.

Switch fonts

In the "View by" list choose Font, and select Euclid Math Two from the list of fonts near the top of the Insert Symbol dialog. Scroll down to the bottom of the character grid until you see the and symbols. Nearby in the character grid, you will see the square-shaped union and intersection symbols, and . Our search did not find these because their names are derived from the Unicode standard, which calls them "square cup" and "square cap" respectively.

Keyboard shortcuts
The Insert Symbol dialog allows you to assign a keyboard shortcut to any character in any font.

Save the new symbols to the toolbar

You can click Insert to insert symbols directly from the Insert Symbol dialog. However, if you're going to be using them repeatedly, you'll want to place them on one of MathType's bars for easier access. Press and hold Alt (Mac: ) and drag the character from the grid in the Insert Symbol dialog to the Small Bar. Then do the same for the symbol. See Using MathType Desktop's Toolbar for more information about working with MathType Desktop's toolbars.

Now use the new symbols

Edit your equations to use the new symbols:

MathType knows all about the Euclid Math Two font, so it realizes the and

symbols are binary operators, just like ∪ and ∩, and it puts the correct spacing around them automatically. If you use characters from more obscure fonts, you'll have to take a few extra steps to get this automatic spacing to work. To learn more about MathType's knowledge of fonts, and how you can extend it, see Adding to MathType's font and character knowledge.

MathType Desktop has built-in keyboard shortcuts for many of its commands, and the most commonly-used symbols and templates. However, you can change any of MathType Desktop's shortcuts, and you can also assign your own shortcuts for any items you place on the toolbar. See Keyboard shortcuts for a complete list of the built-in shortcuts.

Watch the Status Bar As you move the mouse over items in the palettes, MathType's status bar – that's the very bottom of the MathType Desktop window – displays a brief description of the current item, including its keyboard shortcut if one has been defined.

We'll start by defining a shortcut for a template that doesn't already have one.

Using the same template several times

Let's assume that you have to create several equations that include the template (open brackets). MathType does not define a shortcut for this template. To assign one, first choose the Customize Keyboard command on the Preferences menu.

Customize Keyboard dialog

The Customize Keyboard dialog will appear. The panel titled Command: contains a hierarchical list of all the MathType commands that can be assigned keyboard shortcuts. We want to assign one to a toolbar item, so click on the + next to the Toolbar Commands category. An indented list will appear underneath Toolbar Commands. Click on the + next to Templates in this list, and then on the + next to Fence Templates.

Find Open brackets

Select Open brackets (obrack) from the list (you may have to scroll the list down a little for this item to appear).

The template open brackets will appear in the panel next to the description so you can confirm you've selected the correct template.


Click inside the text box labeled "Enter new shortcut key(s)".

Create a shortcut

Type Ctrl+T, followed by [. Notice a message appears below the box indicating this shortcut is already assigned to the Left Bracket command. If we were to assign this combination to the Open Brackets template, it would be removed from the Left Bracket command. When assigning new shortcuts always check that you don't accidentally overwrite an existing shortcut.

Multiple shortcuts
You can assign more than one shortcut for the same symbol, template, or menu command if you desire.

Assign a different shortcut

Press backspace once, and then type Alt+[. This time there's no current assignment. Now click the Assign button, and you'll see the shortcut appear in the Current Keys list, as well as being appended to the Open Brackets item in the list of commands.

Try the shortcut

Click Close to close the dialog, then type Ctrl+T followed by Alt+[. You'll see the open brackets template appear in the equation window.

Customize Keyboard
The Customize Keyboard dialog lets you reset a command's shortcut to its default setting by selecting it and clicking Reset Selection. Click Reset All to reset every command's shortcuts back to their original settings.

Since there are so many commands available in MathType Desktop, both one-key and two-key shortcuts are supported. MathType defines shortcuts for many templates using the form Ctrl+T followed by another character, which is why we used this particular combination. Of course, you're free to define your own schemes as you see fit.

Two-key shortcuts

When MathType displays a two-key shortcut, it will be in the form of the first key, a comma, the second key. For the shortcut created in Step 7 above, we'd show that as Ctrl+T, Alt+[. Other common two-key shortcuts are Greek letters: Ctrl+G, A for a lower-case alpha or Ctrl+G, Shift+S for a capital Sigma, for example. From the time you release the first key or key combination, you have four seconds to press the second key or key combination.

Assigning a shortcut to a toolbar expression

Custom toolbar items

Make sure the Small Tabbed Bar is visible and click the Algebra tab. We're going to assign a shortcut to the expression, which should be the last item in the bar unless you've modified the contents.

Expression Properties dialog

Right-click the item and choose the Properties command (Mac: Expression Properties) from the context menu that appears. In the Expression Properties dialog (Mac: Template Properties) that opens you'll see the same keyboard shortcut items we saw in the Customize Keyboard dialog.

Enter the shortcut

Enter the shortcut Alt+R for this expression and close the dialog.

Try the shortcut

Type Alt+R, and will be inserted into the equation window.

We could have assigned a shortcut for this expression using the Customize Keyboard dialog, but locating the command would have involved clicking on Toolbar Commands, Tabs, Tab 1, Small Bar, Expression 14. Right-clicking the expression directly is a lot faster!

This tutorial teaches you how to convert MathType equations into textual markup languages, such as TeX, LaTeX, and MathML. Our main focus will be on LaTeX, but techniques for other languages are very similar.

In creating your LaTeX document, we assume you will be running MathType Desktop at the same time as your usual TeX system.

Not a TeX processor nor a TeX/MathML editor
MathType Desktop uses a system of translators to convert the MathType equation into TeX/LaTeX/MathML code. It does not create a complete TeX document, nor is it natively a TeX or MathML editor. Just as with spoken languages, any time translation is involved, there is the risk of something being translated not optimally, or perhaps even incorrectly. If you come across cases of this, please let us know by emailing our Tech Support department.

Suppose you want to create the following paragraph in your LaTeX document:

Here's how to do it:

Begin the document

Type In the quadratic formula in your text editor or TeX system.

Open MathType

Run MathType Desktop by choosing it from the Start menu, Programs menu, Applications folder, etc. (In other words, don't run it by opening it from Word, Pages, or another application.)

Cut and Copy Preferences dialog

From MathType Desktop's Preferences menu, choose Cut and Copy Preferences. In the dialog that appears, set the options as shown below, and then choose OK.

Type formula

Create the quadratic formula in MathType.

Copy it

From MathType Desktop's Edit menu (or by using shortcuts), choose Select All and then Copy.

Paste into the TeX document

Switch back to your text editor, and choose Paste. This will insert the following text into your document:

\[ x = \frac{{ - b\pm \sqrt {b^{2} - 4ac} }}{{2a}} \]

If you are familiar with LaTeX, you will recognize this as the LaTeX source code for the quadratic formula.

Resume typing the document text

Continue typing the discriminant, then switch back to MathType.

Another MathType expression

Create the discriminant term .

Inline Equation

In MathType Desktop's Format menu, choose Inline Equation. This makes MathType generate the appropriate LaTeX code for an inline equation.

Copy and paste into the document

Copy the expression from step 8, and paste it into your text document, then type is the most important term. Your document should now look something like this:

In the quadratic formula
\[x = \frac{{ - b\pm \sqrt {b^{2} - 4ac} }}{{2a}}\]
the discriminant $ {b^{2} - 4ac} $ is the most important term.

Translator options

In many situations it is useful to be able to transfer old equations from a TeX document back into MathType for editing or reuse. This is generally possible, whether the equations were originally created in MathType or not. However, if you are creating TeX equations with MathType Desktop and there's a chance you or someone else may need to translate them back into MathType in the future, it's helpful to be familiar with the translator options.

To understand the approach, choose Cut and Copy Preferences from MathType Desktop's Preferences menu, and check the box labeled "Include MathType data in translation". Now create the quadratic formula again and copy & paste it into your text document. This time, the resulting text will be

% MathType!MTEF!2!1!+-
% feaaguart1ev2aaatCvAUfeBSjuyZL2yd9gzLbvyNv2CaerbuLwBLn
% hiov2DGi1BTfMBaeXatLxBI9gBaerbd9wDYLwzYbItLDharqqtubsr
% 4rNCHbGeaGqiVu0Je9sqqrpepC0xbbL8F4rqqrFfpeea0xe9Lq-Jc9
% vqaqpepm0xbba9pwe9Q8fs0-yqaqpepae9pg0FirpepeKkFr0xfr-x
% fr-xb9adbaqaaeGaciGaaiaabeqaamaabaabaaGcbaGaamiEaiabg2
% da9maalaaabaGaeyOeI0IaamOyaiabgglaXoaakaaabaGaamOyamaa
% CaaaleqabaGaaGOmaaaakiabgkHiTiaaisdacaWGHbGaam4yaaWcbe
% aaaOqaaiaaikdacaWGHbaaaaaa!42E1!
\[x = \frac{{ - b \pm \sqrt {{b^2} - 4ac} }}{{2a}}\]

The first nine lines of text (the ones starting with a % sign) are a TeX comment containing MathType's own private representation of your equation. You must select this comment when you paste it back into MathType so it will be converted exactly back into a normal MathType equation. If you change the comment in any way, the transfer back to MathType will not work. TeX comments are ignored during the typesetting process, so they will have no effect on your final output.

What's not included in the translation?

Note that if you copy only the TeX code and paste it into MathType (without the MathType data), the equation will normally appear just fine. But let's say you copied this equation from a Word document to translate into TeX, and now you want to paste it back into MathType to use in PowerPoint. MathType allows many adjustments to the appearance of the equation that aren't carried over to the TeX translation. If you had made adjustments to the color of the equation, the font face, the font size, or some spacing adjustments, these will not appear in the TeX code, but they will be retained in the MathType code. Therefore, keeping the MathType code with the equation ensures you will be able to paste the equation back into MathType exactly as it was when you originally created it.

MathType Desktop's Cut and Copy Preferences dialog also provides the "Include translator name in translation" option, which helps to delineate and identify equations in your documents. This might be useful if you want to write programs that search your TeX source files looking for equations and processing them in some way.

Other translators

MathType Desktop includes translators for several dialects of TeX (Plain TeX, AMS-TeX, LaTeX, and AMS-LaTeX). These dialects correspond to various packages of TeX macros, which you must load before you typeset your document. For example, to typeset AMS-LaTeX code, you must include the commands \documentclass{amsart} or \usepackage{amsmath}, or some equivalent somewhere in the preamble of your document. Please consult your TeX or LaTeX documentation for more details.

Wikipedia and many other blogs, wikis, and websites represent math in a language called Texvc, which is essentially a subset of TeX math. MathType Desktop includes a Texvc translator tuned for use with Wikipedia, and a second generic Texvc translator that works with many other sites that use TeX. Because Texvc is somewhat simpler than other TeX dialects, one of these translators is often a good choice if you will be editing the equation further by hand. MathType has a Toggle TeX feature that allows you to toggle back and forth between Texvc and MathType views of an equation in Microsoft Word.

MathType Desktop also includes translators for using MathType with a number of other applications and websites, including Maple, Mathematica, Physics Forum, Wikipedia, and Wolfram|Alpha. Look for these applications by name in the Equation for application or website section of the dialog.

The list of available translators is constantly growing. See Using MathType with Applications and Websites for more information.


We also supply translators for MathML, a markup language based on XML (eXtensible Markup Language) for encoding mathematics. The current version of MathML is MathML 3.0, but MathType doesn't yet have translators for the additional capability provided by MathML 3. MathType Desktop comes with three MathML 2.0 translators that only differ in the namespace in which the MathML is placed. Which one you should pick is determined by the MathML renderer you use – either an added rendering tool (such as MathJax) or a browser with built-in MathML support (Firefox and, to a lesser extent, Safari, and perhaps others).

Creating and modifying translators

If our standard translators do not meet your needs, you may want to modify one of them or write a new one of your own. Each translator is driven by a translation file written in our Translator Definition Language (TDL). You will find several TDL files in MathType Desktop's Translators folder, and you can edit these to suit your needs, or write completely new ones.

In this tutorial we show you how to export all the equations in a Word document to individual graphics files. You can export them as GIF, EPS, WMF, PICT (Mac), or PDF (Mac) files, and you can control the location and naming of the files. You also have the option to replace each equation with the name of its corresponding file. This feature can be useful when importing Word documents into desktop publishing programs. Some software doesn't import embedded equations very well, preferring individual equation files. The Export Equations command makes this process much easier.

Launch Microsoft Word

Launch Word and create a document containing a couple of equations.

Export Equations dialog

Choose the Export Equations command on Word's MathType menu or in the Publish group on Word's MathType tab. The Export Equations dialog will appear.

Where to save the images?

Enter a location in the Folder field. You can either type the name of a folder or click the Browse button and select a folder. If you enter the name of a folder that doesn't exist you will be asked if you want to create it. Check the "Delete all files of same type in folder" checkbox if you want all files with the same extension deleted from this folder before exporting. Be careful if you select this option; if you export as GIF files to the folder C:\My Documents then every GIF file in this folder will be deleted. It's usually safest to create a new folder for each set of exported equation files.

GIF settings
You can set the resolution, background color, and other attributes of GIF files in MathType Desktop's Web and GIF Preferences dialog.

Which image format?

Select the format of the exported equation files. You can also set the filename pattern and the starting number. The above example will create the files Eqn001.gif, Eqn002.gif etc. Setting the pattern to "PhysIntro###" and the first number to 50 will create the files PhysIntro050.eps, PhysIntro051.eps, etc. You may want to experiment with different patterns and numbers.

Replace equation with file name

Check the "Replace equation with file name" checkbox if you want to replace each equation exported from the document with the corresponding file name. For example, the above settings would insert the text <<Eqn001.gif>> in place of the first exported equation. Clear this checkbox if you want to leave the equations in the document unmodified.

"Whole document"?

Choose the "Whole document" option if you want to export all equations in the document. The "Current selection" option is enabled only when you select a portion of the document before running the Export Equations command.

Export the equations

Click OK to start the exporting process. When the process has finished, a dialog appears showing how many equations were exported.

Quite often in mathematics it's necessary to mark through a term in an expression to show borrowing in a subtraction problem, to divide out common factors in a rational expression, etc. It's a trivial matter with a pencil and paper to perform such a "strike-through", but when writing a document in your word processor, it's a different matter. This tutorial will show how to make such annotations with MathType Desktop. We'll assume you're preparing a worksheet showing how to simplify a rational expression:

We want to show students how to divide out the common factors, so we'll use MathType Desktop's strike-through templates.

Begin the equation

Create the first fraction shown above, then type = and insert the second fraction template:

Strike-through templates

Before typing the numerator, choose the "Strike-through (bottom-left to upper-right)" template from the "Underbar and overbar" templates palette:

Type the expression inside the strike-through template

Inside the strike-through template, type the first factor in the numerator. Press Tab to exit the strike-through template, then type the second factor:

Strike-through thickness
If the strike-through line isn't distinct enough when you print or project it, you can increase its thickness. From the Format menu, choose Define Spacing. Scroll down near the bottom of the list until you find Strike-through thickness. Increase the thickness to a value that will make the strike-through more vivid. It's not necessary to click Apply before clicking OK, but doing so allows you to try out different thickness values before choosing the one you like best.

Repeat for the denominator

Repeat these steps for the denominator.

Strike-throughs in color
A good way to draw attention to part of an expression is to create it in a contrasting color. If you're printing your worksheet in color or inserting a strike-through into a PowerPoint presentation, choose the strike-through color before choosing the template, then choose the strike-through template. If you want the contents to be black, switch back to black before typing the contents.

Type the second line to complete

If you want to complete the steps of the solution, press Enter when you're finished with the second fraction. Type another =, then type the final fraction in simplified form. To align the two lines at the = symbols, choose the Align at = command from the Format menu. The final problem solution should look like this:

Length of the strikethrough
If it looks to you like the strike-throughs are too long, you can adjust the length, in a way similar to the way we described adjusting the strike-through thickness above. In the Define Spacing dialog, scroll down for a value labeled "Radical gap (vertical)". A smaller value for this parameter will result in a shorter strike-through. Be aware though, it will also have the obvious additional effect, which may not be desired. (That is, it will also affect the vertical distance between a radicand and the radical stroke above it.)

This concludes the last of our tutorials. We certainly haven't covered everything MathType can do, but if all went well then you've grasped the basic principles. Using MathType with applications and websites contains additional information about using MathType with other applications. Creating web pages with MathPage introduces MathType's MathPage technology, and shows how you can generate great-looking web pages from Word documents.

The Style menu section covers MathType Desktop styles and advanced formatting. It's not necessary to read these sections immediately, but once you've progressed beyond creating simple equations you'll find them worth reading. If you get stuck, please get in touch with us – our contact information is listed on our website.