Skip to main content

Learning the Software

It's a rule in my life. Every time I need to start using a new piece of technology, whether it's a computer program or something more mechanical, I always postpone learning how to use it until I'm faced with a big project and a tight deadline.

Don't be like me. Figure out how to use your computer and all its programs before school starts. Make some fake academic papers and save them just to see if you can get the computer to do what you want.
  • Those "For Dummies" books aren't bad—just don't get put off by the dummies part. If you can get to a bookstore or order from Amazon or Barnes & Noble, you can find good help there.
  • There's a LOT of good help available on the Internet, and the more specific your question, the more likely you are to get a good answer. (I recently found what I needed by searching for "Apple Pages hide sidebar.")
  • Here is a link to our course computer help directory. I set up the help files for the specific word processors so they are printable cheat sheets.

A word of caution

Software companies, especially Microsoft, love to change things around. Frequently. They don't often delete tools, but they love to put them in different places or change names. So …
  1. When you search for help on the Internet, be really specific. Use search terms like "Word Office 365 sort list."
  2. If you find a link to instructions that are more than a year old, be aware that the appearance of the software might have changed totally since it was written.
  3. Try the "Help" button within the program.
  4. The keyboard shortcuts (for example, Ctrl + P for printing on Windows equipment) don't usually change, so if you can learn those for the tasks you need, you are ahead of the game.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

How to Take Our Hybrid Course

  English 100 will be a bit like Harry Potter's hippogriff—neither horse nor eagle. It's neither a 100% distance education course nor 100% face-to-face, so we will need some special strategies to make it go. What you will see when you open Blackboard On the left of the Blackboard screen, you will see folders, one for each week. When you open a folder, you will see: A link which takes you to the assignment schedule for the week (really just a section of the syllabus) A link to a "Face-to-Face" video of me introducing the week One or more links to a narrated PowerPoint lesson on how to write a paper Links to web pages for the week A drop box for the week's writing A grammar quiz What you won't see on Blackboard Specific reading assignments in America Now or Writer's Reference (You will have to open the assignment schedule link or look at your printed syllabus for those.) The

The Basic Set-up of Our Course

This Fall, English 100 will be a hybrid course. This means that about 1/3 of our instruction time will be on campus in a classroom and 2/3 will be online. We are doing this to minimize the risks of transmitting the Covid-19 virus, while still giving you the advantage of a college campus course. Dividing the class into groups During the last week before class, you will receive an email telling you which group (cohort) you are in. Each cohort will have five or six students. The class meets in Dauch, where the classrooms have a normal capacity of 20-25 students, so you should have no trouble maintaining social distancing. Each cohort is assigned a day (Monday, Wednesday, or Friday) for your on‑campus session. Your class schedule should give you the room number and time. Attendance at these sessions is required. Important Note #1: These are assigned days! I don't want the entire crowd from one day drifting in on another day because you forgot or overslept. The idea is to ke

A friendly note about reading responses

First, yes they are required. One of the key strategies for getting good grades in any class is to submit every assignment, large or small, on time. Second, the questions for our reading responses are quite specific. If you didn't bother to read the article (or the question) and just grab one or two major words from the assignment and run, you aren't likely to get a very good grade. The prompt for this Friday is: Does Niman understand and accept the journalists' confusion about and reaction to what happened to the Columbus statue? How do you know? To do this one, you will need to know: What happened to the statue? What was the journalists' confusion and reaction? What evidence do you see that Niman "got it" (or didn't)? A generic discussion of the value of statues in public places isn't going to answer this question.