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- [Instructor] In this week's work tip, I'd like to show you a little trick for calculating simple mathematical equations that you may have right from with inside Word. In other words, you don't need to access a calculator to get your answer. You don't need a table and a formula. You don't need Excel. If you're looking at simple equations using addition and subtraction, there's a trick you can use to calculate on the fly. We're going to do it with this file in Math Quiz 044 if you have the exercise files. If you don't, no problem, just type this out and after the equals sign with the cursor flashing, that's where we want our answer and we're going to use Word to get it.
Here's the trick. With the keyboard shortcut control F9, go ahead, you'll see that's the shortcut for inserting a field. It's a blank field. We see the braces, flashing cursor in the center. All we have to do now is type in that exact same equation we see to the left, but preceded by an equals sign. So type in the equals sign, and now because you can see that each of the numbers and the symbols are separated with spaces, we'll type it in but without the spaces. So let's type in 41.4.
The plus sign is on the keyboard. It's shift and the equal sign. Then it's 11.3. No spaces. A minus sign is a dash. Then it's 15.7 and we need another plus sign, and then three. Now to get the answer, all we do is press F9 all by itself. There's your answer, 40. Now you can click anywhere off to the side to deselect it. It's still a field, but it's displaying the answer. Now if you wanted to make an adjustment, maybe you typed in the wrong symbol or one of the numbers incorrectly, just go back to it with the click.
You can see it's shaded; that indicates it is a field. So you can right-click now and go to edit field. With edit field, it opens up the field dialog where you can click the formula button now to get access to the formula. So you can change up any of the numbers, the symbols, the number format down below if you wanted to choose a different format, you could, such as with decimal places. Even though it comes out as a whole number, you might want decimal places in there. Click okay to change up and you can see it's the same answer, but with a couple of decimal places.
Now if you have the calculation, simple one again, using addition and subtraction, there's no division, there's no multiplication here, and there are no spaces in between our numbers and symbols, well, now we have a even better shortcut. That's to select everything that we see here, just to the number, we don't need the space after that last number, the three, and copy it. You can use control C on the keyboard, right-click and copy, however you like to do it. Click after the equals sign, and now we'll use the same set of shortcuts. Control F9, the equals sign to start off our formula.
This time, instead of typing it, we'll use control V to paste it, and we'll press F9 to get the answer. Click off to the side to deselect. 116.99. So this time, even though we didn't choose the number format, we see the decimals because we are using decimals, and sure enough, it works with those. What about negative numbers? This one down here is going to come out to a negative answer, but let's click and drag over the numbers just like we did. We don't need that space after the five.
We'll copy it, control C. Click after the equals sign. The routine should be coming quicker now. Control F9. Equals. Control V and F9. There's your answer, negative 34.5. So these are simple equations using addition and subtraction. No division, no multiplication. And if that's the case, you can get your answers right here on the page, right from within Word without accessing a separate calculator, without using a table and formulas. You don't even need Excel.
It's all built right into fields here in Microsoft Word.
Skill Level Intermediate
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