9 Google Docs Hacks for Students | Lifehacker

Throughout my tutorial {and professional} journeys, one factor has remained my fixed ally: Google Docs. Not solely is having all of your paperwork accessible 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 functions are plentiful, however let’s give attention to what Google Docs can do for college students, 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 once 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 unintentionally sort in all-caps or must make a title however don’t wish to rewrite what you have already got, it is a little-known fast repair that can save a lot time. 

  • Make note-taking in school means simpler by choosing “Voice Typing” from the “Tools” menu. Once you click on the little microphone icon that seems, something your pc mic pics up can be put into the doc. It gained’t be good, however it is going to be editable, so you possibly can simply let it jot down all the pieces 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 high 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 screen, so that you don’t want to depart the doc to Google your phrase. Perhaps better of all, the underside of the panel reveals synonyms which you can swap into your doc to take your vocab up a notch, which is useful for once 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 exchange textual content in Google Docs by hitting Command + F. The regular search bar will seem within the high proper of the window, however if you happen to click on the three-dot menu, you’ll get the choice of not solely “Find,” however “Replace.” If you’ve been misspelling somebody’s title again and again all through an essay or utilizing a phrase too many instances, you possibly can exchange it shortly. You even have the choice of doing a full “Replace All” or toggling from occasion to occasion and deciding if you happen to solely wish to exchange a couple of of them. 

  • Insert a desk of contents from the “Insert” menu if you might want to maintain an extended doc organized. This solely works if you happen to 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, nevertheless it creates an important 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 also click on the headers inside the desk of contents to shortly 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 completely different variations within the 45 minutes I’ve been at it. 

Google Docs hacks for all the pieces else

You can (and positively 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 often require a number of applications 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 may do that till a couple 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 straightforward 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 may do that proper in Google Docs without spending a dime, I used to be printing out all my sign-able paperwork, signing them with a pen, and importing footage 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 be capable of insert it proper within the doc. Again, that is free

  • Add in-text “tasks” to remain on observe. This is useful if you happen to’re working collaboratively with a gaggle or simply must get an enormous task performed on a selected timeline. By typing @process into the doc, you’ll immediate a dialog field that means that you can title 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 possibly can tick them off as you go.