How to Type an Upside Down Question Mark

The upside down question mark (¿) that English speakers and writers only seldom see is not an aberration or the usual question mark’s evil twin. In actuality, ¿ is the question mark used in written Spanish and in a few other languages that have cultural ties to the Spanish language. The upside down question mark, in all of the languages it is used in, is used to create interrogative sentences and, unlike its counterpart – the usual question mark we all know and love, the upside down question mark is written or typed at the start of an interrogative sentence instead of at the end.

Seeing as it is not a punctuation mark belonging to the English language, almost all keyboards for computer that are in the English language do not include ¿. That does not, however, mean that ¿ cannot be typed on a computer – typing ¿ on a computer is not only possible but also pretty easy. You can always open the Character Map on a Windows computer, search for “inverted question mark“, click on ¿ to select it and click on Copy to copy it, and then paste it wherever it is required, but wouldn’t it be much easier if you could simply type an upside down question mark on your own?

On any version of the Windows Operating System, you can go about typing an upside down question mark (¿) one of three different ways:

Method 1: Type ¿ using its Alt code

On Windows computers, all special characters can be typed using their Alt codes, and ¿ is categorized as a special character. That being the case, you can type ¿ using its Alt code. To do so, you need to:

  1. Move your cursor to the point on your screen where you want to type ¿.
  2. Make sure your keyboard’s Num Lock is turned on, meaning that you can use the number pad.
  3. Press and hold down on the Alt key on your keyboard.
  4. With the Alt key held, type 1680191 or 6824 on the number pad (any of the three will do just fine).
  5. Let go of the Alt key. As soon as you let go of the Alt key, 168 will appear where your cursor was.

Method 2: Configure your computer to use the US-International keyboard layout

Computers support a multitude of different keyboard layouts, and one of these keyboard layouts is the US-International keyboard layout. You can also type ¿ on a computer if you configure it to use the US-International keyboard layout. While this method works on computers running on any version of the Windows Operating System, it also works on computers running on basically every other Operating System out there.

Once you have configured your computer to use the US-International keyboard layout, you can type ¿ by pressing and holding down on the Alt Gr (Graphics) key – which is what the Right Alt key (the Alt key located to the right of the Space bar) turns into when using the US-International keyboard layout – and typing while still holding down on the key, releasing the key after pressing /.

Method 3: Typing ¿ in Microsoft Word

There exists a specific method that can be used only to type ¿ on any version of Microsoft Word – the most popular word processor for the Windows Operating System. To type ¿ in Microsoft Word, you need to:

  1. Move your cursor to the point on your screen where you want to type ¿.
  2. Press CtrlAlt Shift /, making sure that you press Ctrl Alt before you press Shift. As soon as you press this combination of keys in the right sequence, an upside down question mark (¿) will appear on the very point in the Word document that you had your cursor at.

Expert Tip

How to Type an Upside Down Question Mark

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