How to Do Accents on the Keyboard

By Travis Meyer

Microsoft’s Windows operating system contains a library of accented characters, allowing you to write grammatically in languages that feature characters with the acute and grave accents, the circumflex, tilde and umlaut. Accented characters are activated in Windows using keystroke commands composed of a series of digits. The library of keystrokes is referenced using the operating system’s Character Map utility. Additionally, online resources allow you to reference Windows’ numeric keystrokes.

Step 1

Click the “Start” button, type “Character Map,” and press “Enter” to open the Character Map utility.

Step 2

Scroll through the character map and click the accented character you want to create using your keyboard. Look at the bottom of the Character Map window, where it says “Keystroke” and note the series of digits following “ALT +”.

Step 3

Insert a cursor in the document or text field where you want to type an accented character.

Step 4

Hold down the “ALT” button on your keyboard and type the series of digits displayed for the accented character in the Character Map window. For instance, if you want to create a lower case “a” with a circumflex, hold down the “ALT” button and type “0226.”