Software

Timesaving document shortcuts: A lesson with staying power

What do your Word students want more than anything else? To quickly get down to business! You can make it happen with this indispensable navigational shortcut.

You know the value of offering simple, compelling tips that your students will remember and use—tricks that boost their confidence in the classroom and deliver real-world productivity in the office. Well, here’s an easy technique you can add to your Word training repertoire: creating document shortcuts. Your students will master this one in minutes—and odds are, they’ll go straight back to work and create their own shortcuts for instant access to ongoing projects. Let’s run through the steps for setting up a shortcut.

Just copy and paste…
To create a document shortcut, first highlight some text to serve as a target in the document and click the Copy button. Next, minimize the Word window or drag it out of the way so you can see the Windows desktop. Then, right-click on the desktop and choose Paste Shortcut. You’ll probably want to change the shortcut name to something more meaningful. To do this, click on the shortcut to select it and then press [F2] to activate the label for editing. Type the desired name and press [Enter]. (Hey, that’s another handy tip your students will appreciate. Tricks within tricks!) Now that you have your shortcut, it’s time for the payoff.

…And then double-click
Close your document, clicking Yes to save your changes. You can even exit Word, if you want. Then simply double-click on the desktop shortcut. Word will open the associated document, navigate to your target text, and select it.

Incidentally, if you’re worried that your students might move or rename a document and “break” their shortcuts, don’t be: Word bookmarks the target text so the shortcut will work even with a name change or relocation—as long as the document stays on the same drive.
Do you have your own collection of favorite, never-fail, class-pleasing tips? Maybe something to engage your students, lighten the mood, provide a change of pace—and make cyberlife a little bit easier too? Send us an e-mail and tell us about it, and we’ll share it with the rest of the training community.

About

Jody Gilbert has been writing and editing technical articles for the past 25 years. She was part of the team that launched TechRepublic and is now senior editor for Tech Pro Research.

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