How to: Work Faster with Keyboard Shortcuts

For users with mobility challenges, navigating a desktop or laptop using your mouse can be a major pain in the wrist. Using keyboard shortcuts is a great way to alleviate the wrist strain associated with constantly using your mouse. Plus, you’ll become more efficient in every computer-related task that you take on! This guide will look at general keyboard shortcuts for Windows and Mac computers. For a complete listing of keyboard shortcuts, go here for Windows, and here for Mac.

To use a keyboard shortcut, hold the first key, press the last key of the shortcut, then release.
Example: To use the shortcut Ctrl + C (copy), hold down Ctrl, press C, and then release both keys.

Windows – Press these keys to do this:

Ctrl + X = Cut the selected item

Ctrl + C = Copy the selected item

Ctrl + V = Paste the selected item

Ctrl + Z = Undo an action

Ctrl + Y = Redo an action

Alt + F4 = Close the active item, or exit the active app

Alt + Tab = Switch between open apps

F3 = Search for a file or folder in File Explorer

F6 = Cycle through screen elements

F10 = Activate the Menu bar in the active app

Alt + Left arrow = Go back

Alt + Right arrow = Go forward

Alt + Page Up = Move up one screen

Alt + Page Down = Move down one screen

Ctrl + Right arrow = Move the cursor to the beginning of the next word

Ctrl + Left arrow = Move the cursor to the beginning of the previous word

Ctrl + Down arrow = Move the cursor to the beginning of the next paragraph

Ctrl + Up arrow = Move the cursor to the beginning of the previous paragraph

Ctrl + Esc = Open Start

Ctrl + Shift + Esc = Open Task Manager

Ctrl + Shift = Switch the keyboard layout when multiple keyboard layouts are available

Shift with any arrow key = Select more than one item in a window or on the desktop, or select text in a document

Mac – Press these keys to do this

Command + X = Cut the selected item and copy it to the Clipboard.

Command + C = Copy the selected item to the Clipboard. This also works for files in the Finder.

Command + V = Paste the contents of the Clipboard into the current document or app. This also works for files in the Finder.

Command + Z = Undo the previous command. You can then press Command + Shift + Z to Redo, reversing the undo command.

Command + A = Select All items.

Command + F = Find items in a document or open a Find window.

Command + H = Hide the windows of the front app. To view the front app but hide all other apps, press Command + Option + H.

Command + M = Minimize the front window to the Dock. To minimize all windows of the front app, press Command + Option + M.

Command + N = New (Open a new document or window.)

Command + O = Open the selected item, or open a dialog to select a file to open.

Command + P = Print the current document.

Command + S = Save the current document.

Command + W = Close the front window. To close all windows of the app, press Command + Option + W.

Command + Q = Quit the app.

Option + Command + Esc = Force Quit (Choose an app to force quit.)

Command + Space bar = Spotlight (Show or hide the Spotlight search field.)

Command + Tab = Switch apps (Switch to the next most recently used app among your open apps.)

Shift + Command + Tilde (~) = Switch windows (Switch to the next most recently used window of the front app.)

Shift + Command + 3 = Screenshot (Take a screenshot of the entire screen.)

Command + Comma (,) = Preferences (Open preferences for the front app.)