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TechNote #125: Last modified: 08/05/2011

MathType commands and menus are missing in Microsoft Word 2008

The information in this document applies to:

  • MathType 6.x (Macintosh)
  • Microsoft Word 2008 (Macintosh)


The MathType menu is missing from Word 2008 and there is only an "Insert equation" button in the Word toolbar. Unlike MathType and earlier versions of Microsoft Office, many of the MathType commands are not available in Microsoft Word 2008. These commands include:

  • Set Equation preferences
  • Insert Display Equation
  • Insert Numbered Equation
  • Insert Equation Number
  • Insert Equation Number Reference
  • Insert/Modify Chapter or Section breaks
  • Format or update Equation Numbers
  • Format Equations
  • Convert Equations
  • Export Equations
  • Publish to MathPage


MathType's toolbar and menu are implemented using Microsoft Office's VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) programming language. Unfortunately, Microsoft has left out VBA support in Office 2008. You can read more about this by visiting So what's the story with MathType and Microsoft Office 2008? VBA has been restored in Microsoft Office 2011, bringing with it the capability for all the commands listed above that aren't available in Word 2008.


In order to restore the MathType commands that are missing from Word 2008, we recommend that you upgrade to Office 2011 and MathType 6.7 as soon as possible. If necessary, you can run both Word 2008 and Word 2011, but since Word 2011 has all the capability of Word 2008 and more, you shouldn't need to do that. By using Word 2011 with MathType 6.7, this insures the greatest compatibility for sharing documents with others, regardless of which version of Word they may be using.

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