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TechNote #21: Last modified: 10/20/99
Last reviewed: 10/20/99

Extra Space under Large MathType 3.x Equations in Word for Windows 2.0

The information in this document applies to:

MathType 3.x (Win)

Microsoft Word 2.0 (Win)


Microsoft Word automatically adjusts the vertical position of imported equations to align them with surrounding text. Word has an internal limit on the number of points objects can be subscripted. The limit is 63 points for the Macintosh and 63.5 points for Windows. If the limit is exceeded with Macintosh Word, the equation is subscripted to the maximum — 63 points. Word for Windows, however, handles the situation differently: it superscripts the equation. When this happens, the cursor in Word extends below the equation, creating a large gap between the equation and the line below it.


There are two ways to work-around this problem.

  1. Break the equation so that it requires a smaller baseline adjustment.
  2. Manually adjust the position of your equation and any surrounding text.

Manual positioning for equations alone on a line

  1. Click on the equation.
  2. Select Character from the Format menu.
  3. Change Subscript/Superscript to none.

Manual positioning in-line equations

  1. Double-click on the equation.
  2. Copy it to the clipboard, and remember the baseline value from MathType’s Status Bar (the ”B=“ value is the baseline value).
  3. Close the MathType window and return to your document.
  4. Select Character from the Format menu.
  5. Change Subscript/Superscript to Subscript 63 pt.
  6. Subtract 63 (Words Subscript/Superscript limit) from the Baseline amount (i.e. B=117).
  7. Superscript the surrounding text 54 points.

Note: This will only work with equation baselines up to 126 pt.

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