Using Microsoft Word Efficiently

It’s that time of year where it seems like you have 50 papers due at the same time. Writing a Microsoft Word document can be time consuming and boring, but a great way to speed up the process of your paper is using hot keys or short cuts. Some of the most commonly used key combinations are copy and paste. A short cut for copy is to select the section of text you would like to copy and hold down <ctrl>  and  <C> at the same time. A short cut to paste is to place the cursor in the spot that you would like the copied selection to appear and then hold down <ctrl> and <Z>.

Trying to have a picture in the middle of your paper, but don’t want all that extra white space around it? Insert your picture into the document, right click it, point to “Wrap Text”, then choose the type of wrap you would like around your picture.

To enhance your paper’s quality, you can use Word’s built in Thesaurus. You will first want to highlight the word that you wish to change, click the Review tab on the ribbon, then select Thesaurus. Another way you can use Word’s Thesaurus is to right-click the word, point to “Synonyms” and then select “Thesaurus”.  Or you can simply hold down <Shift> and <F7>.

Here are some more cool tricks to use in word:

Common tasks in Microsoft Word

To do this Press
Create a nonbreaking space. CTRL+SHIFT+SPACEBAR
Create a nonbreaking hyphen. CTRL+SHIFT+HYPHEN
Make letters bold. CTRL+B
Make letters italic. CTRL+I
Make letters underline. CTRL+U
Decrease font size one value. CTRL+SHIFT+<
Increase font size one value. CTRL+SHIFT+>
Decrease font size 1 point. CTRL+[
Increase font size 1 point. CTRL+]
Remove paragraph or character formatting. CTRL+SPACEBAR
Copy the selected text or object. CTRL+C
Cut the selected text or object. CTRL+X
Paste text or an object. CTRL+V
Paste special. CTRL+ALT+V
Paste formatting only CTRL+SHIFT+V
Undo the last action. CTRL+Z
Redo the last action. CTRL+Y
Open the Word Count dialog box. CTRL+Y

More hot keys/shortcuts can be found here:

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