A Beginner's Guide to Word Processing Using Microsoft Word
There are many reasons for using computers today. Word processing is one area that has demonstrated how powerful computers can be. There are many different names of word processors, and many can be quite complicated. In fact today it is difficult to buy a computer without word processing software included some how. Although there are many different kinds of software, most share the same basic functions, and do not require advanced computer or typing skills to use. These basic functions include:
As mentioned above there are many different names of software for both the Macintosh and Windows 95 computer. These include Microsoft Word, ClarisWorks, Word Perfect, WordPad, AppleWorks, etc. Typing skills make using all of them easier, of course, but not necessary. Even somebody who hunts and pecks all of their keys will still actually type faster than writing by hand. Therefore you need not worry about being able to type faster than your boss can talk.
To start, open up your word processor. This is usually done by single or double clicking on the icon of the software.
When the software has loaded, it already has opened a blank document to start with. You can now start typing right away. To indent at the start of a paragraph, use the tab key instead of the space bar. The space bar may look alright on the screen, but will look sloppy when printing your document out.
Since this letter is being typed using Microsoft Word from Office 97, it will underline in red any words that the software does not recognize. This feature can be turned off, or you can ignore it (most software do not do this anyway). The red lines will not appear when printing on paper. Later in this handout you will be shown how to use the spell checking tools.
You should also notice that the text that you are typing automatically scrolls to the next line. You do not have to hit Return or Enter at the end of each line. The only time you should hit Enter or Return is at the end of a paragraph.
Continue to type your paragraph and hit enter or return at the end. Hit tab to indent your next paragraph and continue to type.
By now it is a good idea to save your document. This is easy. Since it is the first time to save this document, click with your mouse and hold the button down on the word File at the top left hand corner of the screen. This pops up a menu. Slide down to Save as… and let go of the mouse button.
A window pops up, and you have to choose where you will save to. You can do this by clicking with your mouse. The example below is for Microsoft Word version 7.
I am choosing to save to my My Documents folder.
Give your document a name.
Click on save when done.
It is always a good idea to save every ten or fifteen minutes. Computers are known to freeze or crash. If this happens and you have not saved, you could lose all of your work. From now on you only need to click on File and slide down to Save.
If you wish to quit and work on your document later, click on File and slide down to Exit or Quit. This is usually at the bottom of the File menu.
Opening Your Document
Open your word processing software the same way you did in step one. Now click on the File menu again and slide down to Open…
Your document should now appear before you on the screen.