Language Resources

Typing help for Macs 

Typing special characters

Typing shortcuts

OS X 10.7-10.11 (Lion through El Capitan) allow you to hold down certain letter keys to produce a menu from which you can select a special character. Hold down the letter key until the menu pops up above it. You can then click on the character you want, or you can simply type the number corresponding to the special character, as in the chart below.

a c e i l n o s u y z
1 à ç è î ł ñ ô ß û ÿ ž
2 á ć é ï ń ö ś ü ź
3 â č ê í ò š ù ż
4 ä ë ī ó ú
5 æ ē į œ ū
6 ã ė ì ø
7 å ę ō
8 ā õ
Option key

You can also use the option key to type special characters.

If you want this: Type this:
á, é, í, ó, ú Option + e, then type the letter
à, è, ì, ò, ù Option + `, then type the letter
ñ Ñ Option + n, then type n
ê, Ê, ô Option + i, then type the letter
ü Ü Option + u, then type u
ç Ç Option + c
¿ Option + ?
ß Option + s
¡ Option + 1
£ Option + 3
§ Option + 6
º Option + 0
œ Œ Option + q
æ Æ Option + '

Keyboard Layout Setup

OS X 10.9-10.11 (Mavericks to El Capitan)
1.  Select System Preferences from the Apple menu. 
2.  Select Keyboard.
3.  Select Input Sources.
4.  Click the + button (add).
5.  Select the languages and keyboards you want to use. 
6.  Click the Add button.
7.  Check to make sure "Show Input menu in menu bar" is selected for each keyboard (it should be by default). 
OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion)
1.  Select System Preferences from the Apple menu. 
2.  Select Language & Text.
3.  Select Input Sources.
4.  Click the checkbox for each language and keyboard you want to add.

5.  Select "Show Input menu in menu bar."

To use a keyboard, click the input menu (it should like like a flag or character) on the menu bar and select the keyboard you want. Some apps may not support all language input.

You can also switch quickly between language inputs using the shortcut Option + Command + Space bar to switch to the next input method or Command + Space bar to switch to the previous input method. Note that those shortcuts are pre-assigned to Spotlight, so if Spotlight opens when you try to switch keyboards, go to Apple Menu > System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts. Select Spotlight and uncheck both boxes, then select input sources and check both boxes. 

Keyboard Viewer

The Keyboard Viewer shows you a map of your current keyboard layout. To activate the Keyboard Viewer, go to Apple Menu > System Preferences > Keyboard, and make sure the box next to Show Keyboard & Character Viewers in menu bar is checked. You can then click on the flag icon on the menu bar at the top of the desktop and select Show Keyboard Viewer.