Learning to Type

KeyboardingLearning to type will take a lot of self-discipline and patience. It is important that you do not get frustrated. You need to view the process as a skill you are attempting to master. It takes practice to achieve good technique. It is also important that you establish the foundation of having the correct technique rather than speed. Speed and accuracy are results of establishing a good technique.

Tips for Typing

  • Memorize the letters by not looking at your hands while typing.
  • Good posture helps your form. Keep your feet flat on floor, hips touching the back of chair, back straight, and sit up tall.
  • Additionally, the way you position your arms, wrist, and fingers will help deter any discomfort from typing. Remember to keep your fingers curved, arms close to body, and wrists straight and not touching keyboard.
  • Strike the keys with the proper finger, and then return those fingers to home row keys.

Rhythm – You will eventually learn and develop a good rhythm. This will hopefully keep you from potential tension and anxiety, and it may even minimize mistakes. Instead of focusing on a “quick where is the next” letter approach, an even rhythm will allow you to focus on what to type. If you slow down to achieve an even rhythm, you will find that you actually speed up.

Errors – The acceptable number of typing errors is one error per minute, regardless of how fast you type. Of course, as a beginner, expect to have more. These numbers will lower as you learn to master keyboarding.

WPM – This stands for “words per minute” typing rate. A word is considered to be on average of five keystrokes, including spaces. If you type 50 keystrokes per minute, your typing rate is 10 wpm.

Note: A speed of 40 wpm is the basic minimum standard required by many employers and government positions. Effective typing speeds should be at least three to four times your handwriting speed.

April 2014 Class Registration

Registration is now open for staff and the public for the April 2014 Regional Library Computer Center classes. All classes are held in the Regional Library Computer Center (RLCC) of the Central (downtown) LibraryPRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED FOR ALL CLASSES.

Other classes offered are:

  • Creating Labels and Envelopes in Word 2010 (Advanced)
  • Working with Images in Word 2010 (Advanced)
  • Removing Background Images in Word 2010 (Intermediate)

To register for classes, you may:

  • Visit the Computer Commons department at the Central Library and obtain a copy of the class schedule. Fill it out and return to a Computer Commons staff.
  • Register online through the RLCC website. Please allow 2 to 4 business days for registration confirmation.

Space is limited for each class, and registration does not guarantee you a space. If you register for a class, please make all efforts to attend. Repeated “no shows” could affect your registration eligibility for future classes. If you register for a class and cannot attend, call Public Computer Services at (205) 226-3680 or 226-3681 as soon as possible. Please pay close attention to the class times. No one will be admitted after 5 minutes past the time class is scheduled to start. Classes are provided by the Birmingham Public Library.

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E-Books Workshop Offered in September RLCC Class Schedule

Registration for the Regional Library Computer Center (RLCC) September 2013 computer classes is now open to the public with an E-Books workshop added to the list.

An E-Book is basically a digital version of a book. In this workshop, you will learn how to download E-Books and audiobooks from the JCLC digital library. Many readers find them more convenient and portable. You can choose to check them out for 7 days, 14 days, or 21 days. Once the loan term has expired, the books are returned automatically. This system avoids fines from being accrued. In this workshop, you will learn how to use the Kindle, Nook and iPad (which are provided during the training) If you have a tablet or an E-Reader, you are welcome to bring your personal device. This class is considered an intermediate class, and previous tablet experience is recommended.

Please note that the Basic PC and Keyboarding classes have been merged and a new progression chart is published. This chart suggests the sequential steps of courses patrons should take, in accordance with their computer knowledge and experience.

  • September 9 – Basic PCKeyboarding (Beginner): Introduces people to the computer: basic PC terms, components, hardware, peripherals, desktop features, etc. Participants also learn the basics of working with the computer keyboard and the mouse. Patrons need not have any previous computer experience to take this course.
  • September 10 – E-Books (Intermediate): Introduces you to the digital library and how to download E-books and audiobooks onto your device.
  • September 11 – Basic Internet (Beginner): Introduces people to the history of the Internet, how to access and surf the Web, what web browsers are, what search engines are available, and basic search methods. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding and Basic PC or have some PC, mouse, and keyboarding experience to take this course.
  • September 16 – Microsoft Word 2010 Part 1 (Intermediate): Introduces people to Word 2010, a word processing application that is part of the Microsoft Office suite. It is recommended that participants to take all three parts. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding and Basic PC or have some PC, mouse, and keyboarding experience to take this course.
  • September 17 – Microsoft Word 2010 Part 2 (Intermediate-Advanced)
  • September 18 – Microsoft Word 2010 Part 3 (Advanced)
  • September 23 – Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 Part 1 (Intermediate): Introduces people to PowerPoint 2010 presentation software. It is recommended that participants take Microsoft Word 2010 prior to taking this course.  It is also recommended that participants take both parts of the course. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding and Basic PC or have some PC, mouse, and keyboarding experience to take this course.
  • September 24 – Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 Part 2 (Advanced)
  • September 25 – Microsoft Excel 2010 Part 1 (Intermediate): Introduces people to Microsoft Excel 2010, the spreadsheet software in the Microsoft 2010 Office Suite. It is recommended that participants take Microsoft Word 2010 prior to taking this course.  It is also recommended that participants take both parts of the course. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding and Basic PC or have some PC, mouse, and keyboarding experience to take this course.
  • September 30 – Microsoft Excel 2010 Part 2 (Advanced)

Registration Now Open for July Computer Classes

The Regional Library Computer Center July 2013 Computer Classes schedule is now available, and registration is open to the public for the free courses. Please note that class times have been changed to 10:30 am – 12:30 pm. This month, we are again offering Microsoft Office 2010 programs and featuring Twitter in our “Introduction to Social Media” course. OpenOffice.org programs will be offered in August.

Beginner Classes

  • July 8 – Keyboarding: Introduces you to the basics of working with the computer keyboard and the mouse. Participants need not have any previous computer experience to take this course.
  • July 9 – Basic PC: Introduces people to the computer: basic PC terms, components, hardware, peripherals, desktop features, etc. Participants need not have any previous computer experience to take this course.
  • July 10 – Basic Internet: Introduces people to the history of the Internet, how to access and surf the Web, what web browsers are, what search engines are available, and basic search methods. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding and Basic PC or have some PC, mouse, and keyboarding experience to take this course.

Intermediate Classes

  • July 15 – Microsoft Word 2010 Part 1: Introduces people to Word 2010, a word processing application that is part of the Microsoft Office suite. It is recommended that participants to take all three parts. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding and Basic PC or have some PC, mouse, and keyboarding experience to take this course.
  • July 16 – Microsoft Word 2010 Part 2
  • July 17 – Microsoft Word 2010 Part 3
  • July 24 – Email Workshop: Helps people set up email accounts and learn to maneuver their way through email browsers. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding, Basic PC, and Basic Internet or have some PC, mouse, keyboarding, and Internet experience to take this course.

Advanced Classes

  • July 22 – Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 Part 1: Introduces people to PowerPoint 2010 presentation software. It is recommended that participants take Microsoft Word 2010 prior to taking this course.  It is also recommended that participants take both parts of the course. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding and Basic PC or have some PC, mouse, and keyboarding experience to take this course.
  • July 23 – Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 Part 2
  • July 29 – Microsoft Excel 2010 Part 1: Introduces people to Microsoft Excel 2010, a spreadsheet software in the Microsoft 2010 Office Suite. It is recommended that participants take Microsoft Word 2010 prior to taking this course.  It is also recommended that participants take both parts of the course. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding and Basic PC or have some PC, mouse, and keyboarding experience to take this course.
  • July 30 – Microsoft Excel 2010 Part 2
  • July 31 – Introduction to Social Media – TWITTER: Introduces people to the history, elements, and software used in social media interactions. Participants need to have taken Keyboarding, Basic PC, and Basic Internet or have some PC, mouse, keyboarding, and Internet experience to take this course. An email account is needed for this class.