How to create captions for equations

Word 365
When you add formulas to your document, it may need to add captions - auto-numbered on the same line as equation right justified. It is easy to add captions for the equation:
Formula with caption in Word 2016

To add cations for equations in your document, do the following:

   1.   When you type an equation (see how to create different equations for more details), at the end of it, type the symbol Hash (#) and then the number in a format that you prefer (usually in the round brackets, in parentheses).

For example:

Formula with hash and number in Word 2016

   2.   Press Enter.

Word automatically aligns the equation with the center, and the number after the character # positions with the right justify:

Formatted formula with number in Word 2016

To add automatically updated numbering (captions):

   3.   Position anywhere in the document, not in the equation.

   4.   On the Reference tab, in the Captions group, click the Insert Caption button:

Insert Caption in Word 2016

   5.   In the Caption dialog box:

  • In the Label drop-down list, select Equation,
  • Check the Exclude label from caption checkbox:
    The Caption dialog box in Word 2016
  • If needed, change the numbering by clicking the Numbering... button:

    In the Caption Numbering dialog box:

    • Select the numbering Format,
    • If it is necessary, check the Include chapter number check box and select the level of your heading and a separator.

      For example:

    The Caption Numbering dialog box in Word 2016
  • If it is necessary, add a new label by clicking the New label... button.

    For example:

    The New Label button in the Caption dialog box in Word 2016

    Note: It is possible to add parentheses in the caption for easier formatting with equation numbering:

    To add the parentheses to the number, do the following:

    1. Click the New Label... button and insert an opening parenthesis and click OK:
      The New Label dialog box in Word 2016
    2. After adding a number in the format that you prefer (for example with heading 2 and separator period), type space and a closing parenthesis:
      Example of the label in Word 2016

   6.   Select the added caption, cut it, and paste instead of the number that you added after the symbol # in the equation:

Formulas with captions in Word 2016


  1. To cut a selected text, click Ctrl+X or on the Home tab, in the Clipboard group, click the Cut button:
    Cut in Word 2016
  2. To paste a cut text, click Ctrl+V or on the Home tab, in the Clipboard group, click the Paste button.
  3. To update the pasted number, right-click on it and select Update Field in the popup menu:
    Update Field in popup menu Word 2016

    You can update all numbers automatically by selecting all text (by clicking Ctrl+A or by any other method) and right-clicking on any of the numbers and selecting Update Field in the popup menu.

See also this tip in French: Comment créer les numéros d'équations.

Please, disable AdBlock and reload the page to continue

Today, 30% of our visitors use Ad-Block to block ads.We understand your pain with ads, but without ads, we won't be able to provide you with free content soon. If you need our content for work or study, please support our efforts and disable AdBlock for our site. As you will see, we have a lot of helpful information to share.