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By Chris Le Roy
One of the most efficient methods for selecting text is to use the keyboard. There are essentially two methods for selecting text –
1. Involves Using the Shift Key
2. Involves Using the F8 key and going into Extend Mode
The second option will be discussed in the following topic.
To select text using the Shift key, the first step is to position the insertion point at the start of where the selection is to be. There are two ways to move the insertion point into the appropriate spot, either by mouse or by using the arrow keys. Once the insertion point is in place hold down the shift key and then use your up and down arrow keys and your left and right arrow keys to make your selection.
If you want to select one word at a time all you do is hold down the Shift key and then hold down the Ctrl key and keep them both held down while you use the left and right arrows to select your words.
Another Method: Selecting Text In Extend Mode
Another technique for selecting text using the keyboard is to utilize the function called Extend Mode. When the application is in this mode, you only need to use your arrow keys. There is no need for you to hold down the shift key.
The first step in selecting text in Extend Mode is to position the insertion point at the start of the selection. Then select the F8 key on the keyboard. Once the application is in extend mode you will see in the status bar the EXT box light up. Now all you need to do is use you’re left and right arrows and up and down arrows to select the required text.
To escape out of extend mode press the Esc key once. An alternative method for entering Extend Mode is to double click on the Ext button on the status bar.
Either of these techniques allow you to select text with out removing your hands from the keyboard. The key reason you want to achieve this is efficiency. A person who uses the mouse all the time is 7 times less efficient than someone who uses the keyboard.