How To Change All Caps To Lowercase

Typing in all caps is never necessary. Using capitalization is important to be grammatically correct; typing a sentence in ALL CAPS is considered shouting and generally frowned upon as rude in online conversation. Unless you are indeed having a shouting match over email or instant message, you should always use correct capitalization — you know, capitalizing the first word of the sentence, when using pronouns, and so on. Unfortunately, there are times when you need to convert a paragraph into lowercase when someone else has incorrectly typed a document in all caps — or, perhaps, in AlTerNatIng CaPs (because either the other person thinks they are 13, or they really still are 13).

If you are editing or creating a document in one of the programs in Microsoft Office, including Microsoft Word, you can change all caps to lowercase using the shortcut key combination Shift + F3. This will allow you to change a paragraph that is in ALL CAPS or AlTerNatIng CaPs into sentence case, or all lowecase. For example, to transform:

“THIS IS A SHOUTING SENTENCE! IT’S AWFUL!”

hit Shift + F3 once, and you will get:

“this is a shouting sentence! it’s awful!”

and hit Shift + F3 twice:

“This is a shouting sentence! It’s awful!”

Keep in mind that the above phrase was already grammatically correct — had you not used the proper contraction for “it is” and instead used “ITS” the shortcut key Shift + F3 will not have corrected it for you when you used the shortcut to change all caps to lowercase. Shift + F3 does work well for just changing caps to lowercase or to sentence case, especially with large chunks of text such as paragraphs, emails, or instant messages that are difficult to read. This shortcut also only works in Microsoft Office, so you can not use Shift + F3 in email programs like Gmail, Yahoo! or Hotmail, or when instant messaging. You can always open Microsoft Word, though, and copy and paste the offensive all-caps message to change all caps to lowercase for readability. And then perhaps offer the offender who typed the message in all caps a lesson on Internet and email etiquette.

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  • JONKATHY

    WOW THIS IS NEAT!

  • Eli Feldblum

    That tip is a lifesaver. Can I buy you a beer?

  • Eli Feldblum

    That tip is a lifesaver. Can I buy you a beer?

  • Eli Feldblum

    That tip is a lifesaver. Can I buy you a beer?

  • John Schroeder

    Thanks – this is brilliant!

    One small clarification, though – one of the options that Word cycles through as you press Shift-F3 depends on what you’ve selected. All upper case and all lower case are always part of the mix. However, if you select more than one word, and the selection does not end with a period, and there are no more words after the selection, it will not work as the original poster described; in this situation, title case will replace sentence case. This is because word is interpreting the selection as a title. Generally, this is what you’d want, but — as I learned when I tried to apply the shortcut — in the case of a parenthetical, Word gets it wrong. For instance, in the following four lines:

    here’s a little test.
    (here’s another little test.)
    and another test right here. with a twist
    and here’s one final test

    You would want the first three lines to use sentence case, but on the second one – a full parenthetical sentence – it uses title case. The last one is also title case, but that’s the situation for which title case is designed.

    Anyway, thanks again, and I hope this little contribution helps! I was scratching my head for a couple of minutes because I was getting title case.

  • John Schroeder

    Thanks – this is brilliant!

    One small clarification, though – one of the options that Word cycles through as you press Shift-F3 depends on what you’ve selected. All upper case and all lower case are always part of the mix. However, if you select more than one word, and the selection does not end with a period, and there are no more words after the selection, it will not work as the original poster described; in this situation, title case will replace sentence case. This is because word is interpreting the selection as a title. Generally, this is what you’d want, but — as I learned when I tried to apply the shortcut — in the case of a parenthetical, Word gets it wrong. For instance, in the following four lines:

    here’s a little test.
    (here’s another little test.)
    and another test right here. with a twist
    and here’s one final test

    You would want the first three lines to use sentence case, but on the second one – a full parenthetical sentence – it uses title case. The last one is also title case, but that’s the situation for which title case is designed.

    Anyway, thanks again, and I hope this little contribution helps! I was scratching my head for a couple of minutes because I was getting title case.

  • John Schroeder

    Thanks – this is brilliant!

    One small clarification, though – one of the options that Word cycles through as you press Shift-F3 depends on what you’ve selected. All upper case and all lower case are always part of the mix. However, if you select more than one word, and the selection does not end with a period, and there are no more words after the selection, it will not work as the original poster described; in this situation, title case will replace sentence case. This is because word is interpreting the selection as a title. Generally, this is what you’d want, but — as I learned when I tried to apply the shortcut — in the case of a parenthetical, Word gets it wrong. For instance, in the following four lines:

    here’s a little test.
    (here’s another little test.)
    and another test right here. with a twist
    and here’s one final test

    You would want the first three lines to use sentence case, but on the second one – a full parenthetical sentence – it uses title case. The last one is also title case, but that’s the situation for which title case is designed.

    Anyway, thanks again, and I hope this little contribution helps! I was scratching my head for a couple of minutes because I was getting title case.

  • John Schroeder

    Thanks – this is brilliant!

    One small clarification, though – one of the options that Word cycles through as you press Shift-F3 depends on what you’ve selected. All upper case and all lower case are always part of the mix. However, if you select more than one word, and the selection does not end with a period, and there are no more words after the selection, it will not work as the original poster described; in this situation, title case will replace sentence case. This is because word is interpreting the selection as a title. Generally, this is what you’d want, but — as I learned when I tried to apply the shortcut — in the case of a parenthetical, Word gets it wrong. For instance, in the following four lines:

    here’s a little test.
    (here’s another little test.)
    and another test right here. with a twist
    and here’s one final test

    You would want the first three lines to use sentence case, but on the second one – a full parenthetical sentence – it uses title case. The last one is also title case, but that’s the situation for which title case is designed.

    Anyway, thanks again, and I hope this little contribution helps! I was scratching my head for a couple of minutes because I was getting title case.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_CGKIRPUDXGKOSCE7CQOYWSPYLI Joshua Klaff

    Amazing. YOU ROCK!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_CGKIRPUDXGKOSCE7CQOYWSPYLI Joshua Klaff

    Amazing. YOU ROCK!

  • Peter Bayliss

    Thanks. This used to be relatively easy with MS Word. Now I need you and Google.

  • Peter Bayliss

    Thanks. This used to be relatively easy with MS Word. Now I need you and Google.

  • Peter Bayliss

    Thanks. This used to be relatively easy with MS Word. Now I need you and Google.

  • WALTER MMBAGA

    also try CTRL+SHIFT+K

  • Guest

    Thank you!!!!  This just saved me SO much time!  <3

  • Nlit21

    Thank You Thank You Thank You!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • excelilliterate

    doesn’t work in excel. any tips for that?

  • Guest

    Great help!!!!!

  • JJ Jimsoweed Jones

    Thanks, you just saved me a lot of time!

  • Claude Tinkerson

    So helpful. THANK YOU KELLY.

  • Bogdan Cîrstea

    thanx

  • alapanthriticalophmanitupilash

    I like this HAHA