9 Google Docs Hacks for Students | Lifehacker

Throughout my educational {and professional} journeys, one factor has remained my fixed ally: Google Docs. Not solely is having all of your paperwork obtainable irrespective of the place you’re tremendous useful, however the software program itself is surprisingly versatile and complicated. I’ve by no means encountered something I couldn’t do with Google Docs, from signing a contract to seamlessly working with large teams of collaborators. There are different, smaller hacks for the device that you could be not even find out about, although. Its enterprise purposes are plentiful, however let’s give attention to what Google Docs can do for college kids, particularly. 

Google Docs hacks for essays and notes

So a lot of schoolwork facilities on writing, from essays to memos to notes, so listed here are the hacks that can serve you finest if you’re within the zone on a paper: 

  • Easily change the capitalization formatting of something within the doc by highlighting it and selecting “Format,” then “Text.” At the underside of the menu, you’ll see “Capitalization” and hovering over it provides you three choices: “lowercase,” “UPPERCASE,” and “Title Case.” When you by chance kind in all-caps or must make a title however don’t need to rewrite what you have already got, this can be a little-known fast repair that can save a lot time. 

  • Make note-taking at school approach simpler by choosing “Voice Typing” from the “Tools” menu. Once you click on the little microphone icon that seems, something your laptop mic pics up can be put into the doc. It received’t be good, however will probably be editable, so you’ll be able to simply let it jot down every part your professor says, then revise it later for notes that match up together with your lecture. 

  • Check a dictionary inside the doc by going to “Tools” within the prime menu, then hitting “Dictionary.” You may even spotlight a phrase within the doc and hit Command + Shift + Y to look it up instantly. The dictionary seems within the sidebar of the display, so that you don’t want to go away the doc to Google your phrase. Perhaps better of all, the underside of the panel reveals synonyms which you could swap into your doc to take your vocab up a notch, which is useful for if you’re writing an essay. (Another dictionary tip: Add any technical phrases to your “personal dictionary” so the spell-checker stops flagging them by proper clicking the phrase and including it. This works nice for these of us with bizarre final names, too.)

  • Find and substitute textual content in Google Docs by hitting Command + F. The normal search bar will seem within the prime proper of the window, however for those who click on the three-dot menu, you’ll get the choice of not solely “Find,” however “Replace.” If you’ve been misspelling somebody’s identify time and again all through an essay or utilizing a phrase too many occasions, you’ll be able to substitute it rapidly. You even have the choice of doing a full “Replace All” or toggling from occasion to occasion and deciding for those who solely need to substitute a number of of them. 

  • Insert a desk of contents from the “Insert” menu if it is advisable to hold an extended doc organized. This solely works for those who format the headings in your sections by highlighting them, choosing the “Format” button within the menu, hovering over “Paragraph styles,” then choosing a header choice, however it creates an excellent desk of contents that routinely updates. If data you had on web page two finally ends up on web page three after you insert a paragraph of textual content above it, the desk of contents will replace by itself, so that you don’t should do it manually. You may click on the headers inside the desk of contents to rapidly navigate to that part of the doc. 

  • Find older variations of your doc by hitting “Version history” within the “File” menu. I didn’t find out about this for a very long time and thought that since Google Docs updates routinely, any revisions I made have been everlasting. Not so! I’m penning this in Google Docs proper now and the software program has saved two totally different variations within the 45 minutes I’ve been at it. 

Google Docs hacks for every part else

You can (and undoubtedly do) use Google Docs for extra than simply writing essays. Here are a few of the most handy issues I’ve been in a position to do with Google Docs, which normally require a number of packages when utilizing different software program. 

  • Turn your PDFs into editable textual content paperwork by importing them to your Google Drive, then hitting “Google Docs” within the “Open With…” menu. I didn’t know you possibly can do that till a number of months in the past, when my Adobe subscription lapsed and I used to be refusing to pay for it once more on precept, since I actually solely wanted to edit one doc. There can be some formatting points when doing this, however for essentially the most half, I’ve discovered that Google Docs seamlessly turns the PDF into editable textual content, making it simple to make adjustments earlier than saving, once more, as a PDF. 

  • Sign your paperwork by including a “scribble” in Google Docs. I discover the extensions for Word too difficult and the net doc editors too costly, so earlier than I noticed you possibly can do that proper in Google Docs totally free, I used to be printing out all my sign-able paperwork, signing them with a pen, and importing photos of them wherever they wanted to go. Humiliating. To signal inside Google Docs, go to “Insert,” then “Drawing,” then “New.” A field will seem so that you can attract. Just go to the menu choice that claims “Select Line” and hit “Scribble.” Now, scribble your signature within the field, hit save, and also you’ll have the ability to insert it proper within the doc. Again, that is free

  • Add in-text “tasks” to remain on observe. This is useful for those who’re working collaboratively with a bunch or simply must get an enormous task carried out on a specific timeline. By typing @job into the doc, you’ll immediate a dialog field that permits you to identify the duty, delegate it to somebody (even your self), and set a date that it must be accomplished by, so that you’ll get reminders. It’s useful to place a clean web page firstly or finish of your full doc and add all of the duties there. Google Docs places a bit of checkbox subsequent to all of the duties, too, so you’ll be able to tick them off as you go.