The option key with any alphanumeric or symbol key in a Mac keyboard would insert a special character. The special character would also change when shift is also held with option.

E.g., the following are what I use everyday.

  • Option + hyphen = en dash
  • Option + Shift + hyphen = em dash
  • Option + E = acute accent

Apart from that, I could not find a comprehensive mapping document for each key without a trial and error.

Can anyone share such a document or link?

ANSI US Keyboard, macOS Monterey 12.2.1

  • 1
    Some helpful pages: slcr.wsu.edu/help-pages/keyboards-osx and chriswrites.com/…
    – IconDaemon
    Apr 26, 2022 at 11:18
  • Thanks a lot @IconDaemon, though not all of them seem to apply (p becomes π in my keyboard), it is certainly helpful.
    – Ébe Isaac
    Apr 26, 2022 at 11:22
  • 4
    Are you basically asking to open the Keyboard Viewer, snapshot the combinations, then print them… or just leave it open until you learn them?
    – Tetsujin
    Apr 26, 2022 at 11:34

1 Answer 1


You can easily see how all the keys are mapped with Apple's Keyboard Viewer.

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