You're never too old for shortcuts
I am 52 yrs. old and I work in an office setting as a secretary. I have been doing my job for many years now and when I started this job the use of computers was very minimal and now I spend 90% of my time on one. As I've learned, a lot of my co-workers are much faster than me at navigating through and editing documents, I was wondering if you had any tips on how I can help myself improve without having to spend a lot of money?
As the Baby boomer generation slides into retirement in a state of shock after being told they can now get money out of an "unmanned" machine called an ATM. The early half of Generation "X" (those born "between" 1964 - 1980) is left to finish their career in a technologically advanced society that consistently gets smarter and faster six months at a time. Although the later part of Generation "X" and all of Generation "Y" is at a slight advantage there are tools that can be used to improve your computer skills and thus improve your computing experience.
The following is a list of basic shortcut keys that can be utilized while working on your desktop PC applications at home or the office. (Learn them, memorize them and practice)
1. F1 - Universal Help in almost every Windows program
2. Alt + TAB - Switch between open windows without using the mouse
3. Ctrl + C - Copy selected item
4. Ctrl + V - Paste selected item
5. Ctrl + X - Cut selected item
6. Ctrl + A - Select all text
7. Alt + F - File menu options in current program
8. Alt + E - Edit options in current program
9. Home - Goes to beginning of current line
10. Ctrl + Home - Goes to beginning of document
11. End - Goes to end of current line
12. Ctrl + End - Goes to end of document
13. Shift + Home - Highlights from current position to beginning of line
14. Shift + End - Highlights from current position to end of line
15. Ctrl + Left arrow - Moves one word to the left at a time
16. Ctrl + Right arrow - Moves one word to the right at a time
Learning how to take advantage of these keys will ultimately improve your navigation and editing speed and of course impress everyone at the office.
Here's an example how:
"I asked you to take all the information from Word document "1" and add it to another existing Word document "2" that's already open on your desktop"
Without even touching the mouse you can use "Ctrl + A" (highlight everything in Document "1"), then "Ctrl + C" (Copy), "Alt + TAB" (Switch between applications or documents), Ctrl + V (Paste into document "2") and "you're done!
After practice you will start to see many ways especially in the Microsoft Office Suite that you can use these shortcuts while improving your typing skills at the same time. If you would like to go another step further you can always find evening courses/tutorials online or at your local Community College or University.