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Selecting Text

The Select feature is a powerful tool. Whenever you want to work with a specific section of text, you can select just that portion and work on it separately from the rest of the document. Selecting text gives you maximum flexibility because you can isolate the text or other items that you want to work with. Whatever action you take on the selection won’t affect the rest of the document. When you edit documents, you’ll do a lot of selecting, so take a few minutes to learn some shortcuts.

Selecting Text with the Keyboard

You can use either the mouse or the keyboard to select text. Each method has its own advantages, so it’s a good idea to learn both techniques. Let’s look at selecting text using the keyboard first.

To select a portion of text, follow these steps:

1.
Position the insertion point at the beginning of the area you want to select.

2.
Hold down the Shift key.

3.
Use the arrow keys, or any of the navigation shortcuts that you prefer, to move to the end of the selection. For example, to select text a word at a time, hold down the Shift key while pressing Ctrl+right arrow. To select everything from the cursor to the end of the line, hold down the Shift key and press End.

Word shows the selection with a background color (see Figure 3.1). You can now work with this area of the document as a single unit.

Figure 3.1. Selected text is shown with a different background color to differentiate it from the rest of the text.


Selecting Text with the Mouse

Selecting text with the mouse is also easy, although you might need a bit of practice before you become really good at it. Table 3.1 shows several methods of using the mouse to select text.

Table 3.1. Selecting Text with the Mouse
Mouse ActionWhat It Selects
Drag across textOne whole word at a time
Double-clickEntire word
Ctrl+clickEntire sentence
Triple-clickEntire paragraph
Single-click in left marginEntire line
Double-click in left marginEntire paragraph


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