Computer Short-Cuts

DavidI remember working with a coworker some time ago, and I was absolutely amazed at how he could operate the PC without using his mouse! He was able to quickly and seamlessly operate the PC when entering information and moving about the screen. I, admittedly, was not as quick or efficient, having to stop occasionally to operate the mouse.

That coworker was utilizing what are referred to as shortcut keys. Whenever one or more keys issue a command, you have what is called a shortcut – the keys involved are the shortcut keys. The mouse is still an integral part of operating a PC, but time can be saved by using shortcut keys.

Most everyone is familiar with certain specialty keys such as the Alternate (ALT) key for the PC and the Command or Option keys for Apple computers. These specialty keys, along with the Shift and Function keys, are commonly used with a corresponding letter to create a shortcut.

The following are common shortcuts that work by holding down the Control (CTRL) key and pressing a letter key so that the action described will be performed:

CTRL+O – open a document (just about any application)
CTRL+S – save a document (just about any application)
CTRL+P – print a document or web page in Internet Explorer
CTRL+C – copy selected information or text in your document
CTRL+X – “cut” selected information or text in your document (then paste elsewhere)
CTRL+V – paste selected information or text in your document
CTRL+Z – “undo” the most recent command you issued
CTRL+Y – “redo” the most recent command you issued (usually after you clicked “undo”)
CTRL+A – select, or highlight all text within a document or web page

Here are a couple of shortcuts specific to Windows:

Alt+Tab – Moves you to another open application without using the mouse. Hold down the Alt key and press the tab button. You should see a list of all open applications. Each time you press the tab key, while holding the Alt key, you will notice the application to the right is highlighted. Once you let go of the keys you will be at that application. You may also press the shift key to move to the left within that list.

Windows+Tab – If you really want to look cool, you can move to other open applications by holding the Windows key and pressing the tab key. With this tool, you will see a 3D rendering of all the applications that are currently open.

You can use most of these shortcut keys in several different applications – including Work in

More shortcuts you can use with most Internet browsers:

CTRL+Tab – move one tab to the right (add the shift key to move to the left)
CTRL+T – open a new tab
Alt+Left Arrow – move back one page in history
Alt+Right Arrow – move forward one page in history
CTRL+ (Ctrl and the “+” key on the number pad) – zooms in by 10%
CTRL- (Ctrl and the “-“ key on the number pad) – zooms out by 10%
CTRL+W or CTRL+F4 – deletes the current tab
F5 – refresh the current page
End – move to end of the page
Home – move to beginning of the page
F11 – toggle between full screen and regular views
F6 or CTRL+E – open the search query in the address bar
CTRL+Shift+T – Reopens the last tab you closed

For more ideas on shortcut keys, visit the following website: Microsoft Shortcut Keys

Since a majority of work in today’s business world is done on the computer, both on and off-line, adding a few shortcut keys will not only assist in your job search, but also add to the expertise you offer an employer. Next time you can be that coworker that impresses and looks amazing. 🙂

David Spears is a member of the Workforce Solutions Navigator team for the Texas Gulf Coast Region. Combining training and education to real world examples, David brings personal and professional experience with disabilities to the table in order to help job seekers with disabilities realize their potential. David has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Business Administration with over 20 years of experience in the business world.

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