How to Use En Dashes


Apostrophes     Brackets     Colons     Commas     Ellipses     Em Dashes     En Dashes     Exclamation Marks     Hyphens     Parentheses     Periods     Question Marks     Quotation Marks     Semicolons

It’s probably safe to say that the en dash is the least well-known punctuation mark of the fourteen marks. It doesn’t have a lot of use (in fact, there’s only one way to use en dashes) and it looks an awful lot like a hyphen (and most people misuse hyphens in place of an en dash.) En dashes are a desktop publishing and design mark used to replace the words “to” or “through” when talking about time. Use en dashes on your résumé or any other document where you indicate lengths of time.

En Dash difficulty ranking: 14/14 (really easy to master)
Even though en dashes are not that well known, there is only one way to use them, making it the simplest of all fourteen punctuation marks to master. It’s not tricky to master in terms of rules. The hardest thing about this punctuation mark is getting MS Word to type it correctly! (And it’s not difficult, once you learn how–see the “Application” section under Use #1 below.)