A superscript is a letter, symbol, or number that is positioned slightly above the standard line of text. They are used to indicate words or phrases that are not italicized or quoted and thus need to be distinguished from the rest of the sentence or paragraph.
Superscripts can be incorporated into the composition using two methods: directly as glyphs (such as ü), or by using character encoding techniques such as Unicode codepoints.
Glyphs are represented within the document in several ways. Most commonly, they are placed on top of other letters; however, they can also be placed at the beginning or end of a word, or within a phrase. When multiple characters are needed to represent a single concept, such as when writing about languages or cultures, it is common to see several different characters used for superscripting.
In English, superscripted letters are usually defined as those that are written one or more lines above their normal position in text. This is done with a special marker called an "underscore" or "hyphen".
A subscript or superscript is a character (such as a number or letter) that is put slightly below or slightly above the standard line of type. It is often smaller in size than the remainder of the text. Examples include the atomic number for elements (e.g., Fe) and the SI units of measurement (e.g., km²).
Subscripts are used when the information they contain is important to the meaning of the word or phrase they appear with. For example, the mass number of an atom is important in determining its chemical properties. Therefore, it is written as a subscript.
Superscripts are used for quantities whose values are not relevant to the meaning of the word or phrase they appear with. For example, the age of a planet is not important in determining its chemical properties; therefore, its super-script can be any number greater than or equal to 1.
Subscripts and superscripts should be written using lowercase letters, except for symbols which start sentences such as "a" for α radiation, "i" for ionization, and "u" for unit.
Subscripts and superscripts should not be typed in math mode; instead, use normal text style with parentheses attached to the appropriate characters. For example, the mass number is normally typed as m(am).
Superscripts occur above the baseline, whereas subscripts appear at or below it. The term "superscript" is usually applied to characters used in scientific notation, while the term "subscript" is generally used for characters that are not part of the normal alphabet.
Subscripts are often used in mathematics to indicate a variable that varies within some set of values, such as x-coordinate or y-coordinate. They can also be used when discussing an index, which is a symbol that refers to another location in the array. For example, if one were looking at the first three elements of an array, one would use [0, 1, 2]. Superscripts are commonly seen in scientific papers and other documents containing mathematical formulas. Both subscripts and superscripts can be used to highlight specific terms in a document. These markers can either be typed separately from the rest of the sentence or included within it.
Subscripts and superscripts are not considered parts of the text itself; instead, they are indicators used by readers to locate certain terms in a paper. Thus, they need to be distinguished from one another when writing a paper or abstract.
Word in Superscript
You may use keyboard keys to make text appear slightly above (superscript) or below (subscript) your ordinary text. Choose the character you wish to format. Ctrl, Shift, and the Plus symbol (+) should all be held down at the same time to create superscript. Ctrl and the equal symbol (=) must be pressed simultaneously for subscript. Release all keys but not necessarily the mouse button.