Save time with computer shortcuts in Microsoft Office programs

If you’re like most people, you’re always looking for ways to save time, even when using Microsoft Office software. Keyboard shortcuts could be your new best friend when it comes to time management.




Not everyone uses shortcut keys to save time, but some people find them easier to use than a mouse, especially when spending long stretches of time at the computer.

Ready-made Microsoft Office tools

If the thought of memorizing key combinations makes you wince, you can still save time and effort while working in all Office programs by using these built-in tools.

  • Shortcut menus. Right-click in any Microsoft Office program to display a shortcut menu that gives you quick access to many of the most commonly used features. If an arrow appears next to your selection, you can click to see more options. For example, right-clicking a Word document displays Paste OptionsLook Up,Synonyms, formatting, and other options.

No matter which Microsoft Office program you’re working in, right-clicking is one of the greatest shortcuts available.

  • KeyTips. Introduced in Microsoft Office 2007, KeyTips are built-in keyboard shortcuts available in all programs that have the Ribbon or the Ribbon and Quick Access Toolbar. In Office 2010, KeyTips are also available in the Backstage view. Press Alt to display a letter or number by each Ribbon tab or Quick Access Toolbar command. After you press a letter or number, you get new KeyTips letters and numbers to access each command in the location you selected.

Pressing Alt displays KeyTips that you can press to quickly access any command.

  • Quick Access Toolbar. Add the commands you use all the time to your Quick Access Toolbar in all Office programs that have the Ribbon. Just right-click almost any Ribbon command, and then click Add to Quick Access Toolbar. This is also a great way to create custom keyboard shortcuts for your favorite commands across all Office programs, since the KeyTips for your Quick Access Toolbar items remain the same as long as the command remains in the same position in the Quick Access Toolbar.
  • Custom keyboard shortcuts on the Office Ribbon. You can even change shortcut key combinations or create new ones of your own. Here’s how to do it in the latest versions of Microsoft Office.

In Microsoft Office 2010:

In Microsoft Office 2007:

Whether you want to work more easily and efficiently in Internet Explorer, streamline your Microsoft Office Home and Student 2010 experience, or key international characters into your email messages to Europe, you’ll find lots of shortcuts to help you. Here is a sampling of commonly used standard-keyboard shortcuts, many of which work across all Office programs—from Outlook toAccess and from Visio to PowerPoint. You can find a more complete list of built-inkeyboard shortcuts for a particular application by searching keyboard shortcutsin Help.

General keyboard shortcuts

To… Use this shortcut
Open Help Press F1.
Select all content in a document, window, or text box Press Ctrl+A.
Search for a file or folder Press F3. In Windows 7, you can also press the Windows logo key to open theStart menu and then type in the Searchbox.
Rename a file or folder Select the file or folder, press F2, and then retype the name.
Find out when the file or folder was created, by whom, and how big it is Select the file, and then press Alt+Enter.
Display the Start menu Press Ctrl+Esc. In Windows 7, you can also press the Windows logo key.
Scroll between open windows Press Alt+Tab, and then hold down Alt while pressing Tab to reach the desired file or program.
Undo an action Press Ctrl+Z.
Redo an action Press Ctrl+Y.
Check the spelling of titles or words in any Office application with the Spelling & Grammar checker Press F7.
Create a shortcut on your desktop to your favorite file or folder In Windows 7: Right-click the file or folder. On the shortcut menu, clickSend to, and then click Desktop (Create shortcut).

In Windows Vista: Right-click the file or folder. On the shortcut menu, clickCreate Shortcut. Drag the new shortcut to your desktop.

Capture a screen shot Press Alt+Print Screen, and then press Ctrl+C to copy and Ctrl+V to paste.
Lock the computer, switch users, log off the computer, change a password, start Task Manager In Windows 7, press Ctrl+Alt+Delete.
Lock the computer Press the Windows logo key+L.
Quit program Press Alt+F4.

Working with Microsoft Word

To… Use this shortcut
Select text Press Shift+Right Arrow, Left Arrow, Up Arrow, or Down Arrow to highlight text. To select one word at a time, press Shift+Ctrl+Arrow. To select to the end of the line, press Shift+End.
Copy selected text Press Ctrl+C.
Cut selected text Press Ctrl+X.
Paste selected text Press Ctrl+V.
Bold text Press Ctrl+B.
Search for text in a document Press Ctrl+F.
Find and replace text in a document Press Ctrl+H.
Got to a page, line, or bookmark in a document Press Ctrl+G.
Italicize text Press Ctrl+I.
Underline text Press Ctrl+U.
Subscript text Press Ctrl+equal sign (=).
Superscript text Press Ctrl+plus sign (+).
Center text Press Ctrl+E.
Align text left Press Ctrl+L.
Align text right Press Ctrl+R.
Justify text Press Ctrl+J.
Decrease the font size Press Ctrl+Shift+less than sign (<). If your mouse has a scroll wheel, you can also press Ctrl and scroll down.
Increase the font size Press Ctrl+Shift+greater than sign (>). If your mouse has a scroll wheel, you can also press Ctrl and scroll up.
Change the font Press CTRL+SHIFT+F, and then use the arrow keys to reach the new font.
Change font size Press Ctrl+Shift+P, and then use the arrow keys to reach the new font size. If your mouse has a scroll wheel, you can also press Ctrl and scroll up or down.
Create a page break Press Ctrl+Enter.
Create a new document Press Ctrl+N.
Open the My Documents window Press Ctrl+O.
Close a document Press Ctrl+W.
Save a document Press Ctrl+S.
Print a document Press CTRL+P.
Preview what you’re about to print Press ALT+Ctrl+I. In Windows 7, this keyboard shortcut opens the integrated Print and Preview window, which you can also access by pressing Ctrl+P.
Resize a shape (Office 2010) Select the shape, and then press Shift+Arrow.
Rotate a shape (Office 2010) Select the shape, and then hold the Alt key while you press the Left Arrow key or the Right Arrow key.

Accelerating Microsoft Excel

To… Use this shortcut
Open a new workbook Press Ctrl+N.
Move left to right, cell by cell Press Tab, or press the Right Arrow key.
Move right to left, cell by cell Press Shift+Tab, or press the Left Arrow key.
Move down, cell by cell Press Enter, or press the Down Arrow key.
Move up, cell by cell Press Shift+Enter, or press the Up Arrow key.
Move down or up to the last empty or non-empty cell Press Ctrl+Shift+Down Arrow or Up Arrow.
Move to the last empty or non-empty cell to the right or left Press Ctrl+Shift+Right Arrow or Left Arrow.
Erase data in the current cell Press Backspace.
Insert a return within a cell Press Alt+Enter.
Return to the beginning of the row Press HOME.
Advance to the next worksheet Ctrl+Page Down
Go to the previous worksheet Ctrl+Page Up
Enter the date Press Ctrl+Semicolon (;).
Enter the time Press Ctrl+Shift+Colon (:).
Find out about the style within the cell Press Alt+Apostrophe (‘).
Display the Format Cells dialog box Press Ctrl+1.
Apply the general number format Press Ctrl+Shift+Tilde (~).
Apply the currency number format Press Ctrl+Shift+Dollar Sign ($).
Apply the percentage number format Press Ctrl+Shift+Percent (%).
Apply a border Press Ctrl+Shift+Ampersand (&).
Remove a border Press Ctrl+Shift+ underscore (_).
Hide the selected columns Press Ctrl+0 (zero).
Hide the selected rows Press Ctrl+9.
Unhide hidden rows within a selection Press Ctrl+Shift+opening parenthesis.

Find more Excel keyboard shortcuts at the MSDN blog.

Expediting Internet Explorer

To… Use this shortcut
Add sites to your Favorites
  1. Go to the site.
  2. Press Ctrl+D to add to your Favorites.
  3. Click Favorites, and then, to create a separate folder for the site or to add it to an already-formed list, click Add to Favorites.
Select a home page
  1. Go to the webpage that you would like to make your home page.
  2. Open the Tools menu, and selectInternet Options.
  3. Under Home page, on theGeneral tab, click Use Current.
Use the History function if you visit a few select sites constantly
  1. Press Ctrl+H to open the History pane.
  2. Select the site that you would like, right-click the site, and then selectAdd to Favorites.
Customize your toolbar to the tools you use most frequently
  1. Right-click the command bar.
  2. Point to Customize.
  3. Click Add or Remove Commands.
Go to your home page Press Alt+Home.
Switch between tabs Press Ctrl+Tab.
Move forward through the items on a webpage or the Address bar Press Tab.
Move back through the items on a webpage or the Address bar Press Shift+Tab.
Find on this page Press Ctrl+F.
Stop downloading a page Press Esc.
Use zoom on a webpage Increase zoom (+ 10%): Press Ctrl+plus sign (+).

Decrease zoom (- 10%): Press Ctrl+minus sign (-).

Increase to 100%: Press Ctrl+0.

Find more Internet Explorer 8 keyboard shortcuts.

For Outlook keyboard shortcuts, read the Outlook team blog.

Shortcuts aren’t limited to Word, Excel, and Internet Explorer, of course. Ample time savers are built into many popular Microsoft programs, including AccessVisio, andPowerPoint. For Outlook keyboard shortcuts, read the Outlook team blog.

Another convenient way to save time is to add and Microsoft Answers to your Favorites in Internet Explorer, so you’ll always have ready help nearby.

The more you use these tools and make Microsoft work for you, the more time you can save. Have fun exploring the options available to you!

Source: Microsoft at Work

  1. Pingback: Enter Left Arrow

  2. I have to say that is an impressive and very useful list of shortcuts to use while working with Microsoft Office. As we all know using this program in the most efficient manner is a must in order to maintain an high productivity level.

  3. pinkii said:

    again, it’s good to share this. But, it is too long to read 😦

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