# How can I change the font in Google Docs just with keyboards shortcuts?

Question

I have Google Docs open in the Google Chrome browser on a Mac. Now I select a piece of text and want to change it's font just with keyboard shortcuts -- without using the mouse.

Example before font change:

Example after font change to e.g. Courier New:

How do I do that?

What I have tried so far

I've read the Keyboard shortcuts for Google documents page, but haven't found anything useful.

There is the Ctrl+Shift+F keyboard shortcut to collaps the menu bar, which then displays the Search the menus (Alt+/) search box.

Now this search box is pretty awesome because I can just type "Courier New" and hit Enter. But! Alt+/ is not working! Why not? I can't get the focus into that search box.

At this point, I should perhaps note that the keyboard layout is set to German.

The US keyboard layout looks like this:

The German keyboard layout looks like this:

So the forward slash / is on the 7 key: Shift+7.

But when I press Alt+Shift+7, it opens the Mac OS X Help > Search menu:

I also switched to the US keyboard layout. But pressing Alt+Shift+7 (which is the key left of the right Shift key) produces the same effect.

I've also tried the forward slash key on the number block. No success.

Plus, I've tried Option+/ as documented on the Keyboard shortcuts for Google documents page (the Option key is the Alt key according to Wikipedia). No success either.

Is Mac OS X highjacking the keyboard shortcut?

Versions

• Mac OS X 10.9.1
• What is that down arrow where caps lock should be? – Clonkex Jun 27 '18 at 1:13
• @Clonkex: It's just a different pictogram for caps lock. It's the same thing. – Lernkurve Jul 1 '18 at 19:08

### Update 28.02.2016

They seem to have updated the possible keyboard shortcuts. With the new keyboard shortcuts, it also works now on my keyboard with the German layout.

For Windows:

For OS X:

I found a workaround.

1. Select a piece of text in the document.
2. Ctrl+Alt+H opens the Help menu.
3. Arrow down puts the focus in the Search all menus menu.
4. Type "cour", hit Enter.

• If you happen to be on a Mac, you can even use BetterTouchTool to put these four steps on a single shortcut! That's pretty awesome. (Remember to put a short delay between steps 3 and 4). – Dennis May 14 '15 at 8:42
• Why would you use Ctrl + Alt + H and arrow down when you can just hit (Alt+/) and start typing? – Eric Bishard Feb 28 '16 at 14:01
• @EricB: Because Alt+/ does not work on my keyboard with a German layout. However, because of your question, I just did some more research and found the new keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Option+Z that works with my keyboard layout. Thank you! See updated answer above. – Lernkurve Feb 28 '16 at 18:23
• yep i was a bit off topic, i missed the part about it not working on your layout. I saw the updated answer. Thanks. – Eric Bishard Feb 28 '16 at 21:37

Not sure exactly what your use case is, but if your goal is to quickly apply a font repeatedly, the easiest way is to first select a block of text with the font you want, hit Command+Option+C to copy formatting, then each time you select the text you want to apply the font to, just hit Command+Option+V to paste formatting.

Note: Doesn't work the first time, but it'll work each subsequent time.

• "Doesn't work the first time, but it'll work each subsequent time" is strange, but correct. My use case is exactly what is described in the question. Which means your suggestion is not the best solution for me because I have to interrupt my workflow by looking for some other piece of text which is formatted the way I want to format the current piece of text. But thanks anyway! Your tip might come in handy in other situations. – Lernkurve Jun 14 '14 at 8:08
• Is it not possible to define a keyboard shortcut that changes to a specific font that you want? – Michael Sep 8 '18 at 16:02
• These days, it works the first time too :-) Thank you for this tip - I didn't realize that unlike the format painter button, copying a format with the shortcut doesn't bring you into the "format pasting mode" where format pasting is the only thing you can do. Thus, the shortcut makes the painter perfect for my workflow: there is only one non-standard font that I frequently use (Courier New, for code snippets), so I can just copy it once when I start writing and always have it available for pasting. – Aasmund Eldhuset Sep 4 '19 at 23:01
• Works for me the first time (too) in Chrome, Safari, and Firefox on macOS 10.14.6; it thus appears to be browser-independent (on macOS, anyway). The cmd-opt-c was the "missing magic" for me (the cmd menus help shows cmd-opt-v but not cmd-opt-c... which seems like a bad miss for GDocs/google) and appears to be a separate clipboard buffer than cmd-c, which is super-duper handy when wanting to re-apply a particular format (eg: a "software code" format) many times in parallel with using the cmd-c buffer for other things. – Johnny Utahh Mar 8 at 22:05

Works for me on windows - I would suggest that OS X is hijacking the shortcut. You could possibly try overriding the Keyboard system preferences (I think it's in: System Preferences | Keyboard | Keyboard Shortcuts).

• Thank you for testing it on Windows and confirming that it works there. I tried your suggestion and disabled the shortcut in System Preferences, but unfortunately it didn't work. However, your suggestion inspired me to try a few more things which led to finding a workaround. Thank you! – Lernkurve Dec 27 '13 at 15:03
• It works for me on Windows 8 using US keyboard layout, but using Czech layout it doesn't work (I have to pres alt+shift+[ to type "/", so maybe the shift key interferes with the shortcut) – lopisan Feb 4 '15 at 8:56

For user interested to increase the font size:

● Option 1: Ctrl+Shift+, to decrease the font. Ctrl+Shift+; to increase.

● option 2: (if that doesn't work):

1. select a text in google doc
2. press Ctrl+Shift
3. try each keyboard key to see which one will increase your font

● Option 3: (if you need high increase/decrease). Instead of pressing multiple time your shortcut you can use this ahk script (just change the mouse position according to your screen size).

● Option 4: use a Tampermonkey script like this (it sets custom shortcuts to change the font color and highlight). You can do whatever you want with tampermonkey such as creating shortcuts to change the font color, highlight it specific color etc. It can basically override anything in your browser using a javascript script (I did not yet manage to change the font size Cf. my attempts in the script ― help needed.)

• I was asking about how to change the font type. Your answer is about how to change the font size. That indeed works with Ctrl+Shift+Period to increase it and Ctrl+Shift+Comma to decrease it. See screenshot. – Lernkurve Oct 24 '15 at 11:56
• @see screenshot, my bad! I updated my Off Topic "answer". It might help some people, I struggled to find it. – JinSnow Oct 24 '15 at 15:06

For Windows:

Using the information in other answers, I created an AutoHotkey script that can lets me apply my two most used fonts with a hotkey. If the following script exists named "AutoHotkey.ahk" in the Documents folder and AutoHotkey is running, Alt+c will change the font to Courier New (for mono-space) and Alt+a will change the font to Ariel (the standard font). Since this script relies on the Alt+/ hotkey to search through the menu item, it can probably be adapted to make any formatting change that uses the menu. Note: increase the delay milliseconds after Sleep if the script operation seems to get stuck in the middle, as the web page may not be ready for the next input yet.

#NoEnv  ; Recommended for performance and compatibility with future AutoHotkey releases.
#Warn  ; Enable warnings to assist with detecting common errors.
SendMode Input  ; Recommended for new scripts due to its superior speed and reliability.
SetWorkingDir %A_ScriptDir%  ; Ensures a consistent starting directory.

; Google docs font change shortcut: Courier New, for monospace
!c::
Send, !/
Sleep, 100
Send, Courier New
Sleep, 200
Send, {Enter}
return

; Google docs font change shortcut: Arial
!a::
Send, !/
Sleep, 100
Send, Arial
Sleep, 200
Send, {Enter}
return


If you have a certain font that you want to switch to. You can save that font to the Paragraph formatting (e.g. Normal text, Title, Subtitle, Heading 1, 2, 3..)

Do this by:

you can do this by selecting a text

Shift + Ctrl + ,/. (or </>)
I've found this info by pressing Ctrl + ? (or /) which opens up the full list of shortcuts.