The Beginner’s Guide to Keyboard Shortcuts for Chromebooks

It’s no secret that Chromebooks have become the dominant form of 1:1 device in public schools in America. In the fourth quarter of 2017, Chromebooks represented around 60% of mobile devices shipped to schools. The success of these low-cost devices is undeniable.

Still, many students and teachers are just getting used to using these devices on a day-to-day basis and don’t know all the productivity tips like they might on Windows or Apple computers.

One power tool that many people ignore on their computers is the keyboard shortcut. One of my former computer science professors held up a keyboard and a mouse in class one day and asked us, “Which one of these do you think is more productive: the one with only 3 buttons on the one with dozens and dozens of buttons?”

For productivity, the keyboard is king. Learn your keyboard shortcuts and you’ll soon realize that, for many tasks, your fingers don’t need to leave the keyboard at all.

And, once you learn the keyboard shortcuts, you can work significantly faster and more efficiently.

Of course, I’m assuming at this point that you know how to type on a keyboard, not just hunt and peck.

One more reason why we should have keyboarding as a required course in schools and not cursive handwriting…

But I digress…

Now, let’s talk about those keyboard shortcuts for Chromebooks. I’ve put together a list of keyboard shortcuts specific to Chromebooks. Yes, many of them are the exact same ones you would use on a Windows or Mac computer but there are some specific to Chromebooks.

Tons of people ask me about this all the time and I decided it was high time to create a resource for folks to use and share. I’ve created an infographic with some of the most common shortcuts but also added a list of shortcuts that you can refer back to anytime.

Tab & Window Keyboard Shortcuts for Chromebooks

Open a new windowCtrl + n
Open a new window in incognito modeShift + Ctrl + n
Open a new tabCtrl + t
Open a file in the browserCtrl o
Close the current tabCtrl w
Close the current windowShift + Ctrl w
Reopen the last tab or window you closedShift Ctrl t
Go to tabs 1-8 in the windowCtrl + 1 through Ctrl + 8
Go to the last tab in the windowCtrl + 9
Go to the next tab in the windowCtrl + Tab
Go to the previous tab in the windowShift + Ctrl + Tab
Switch quickly between windowsPress & hold Alt, tap Tab until you get to the window you want to open, then release.
Open the window you used least recentlyPress & hold Shift + Alt, tap Tab until you get to the window you want to open, then release.
Go to previous page in your browsing historyAlt + Left arrow 
Go to the next page in your browsing historyAlt + Right arrow 
Open the link in a new tab in the backgroundPress Ctrl and click a link
Open the link in a new tab and switch to the new tabPress Shift + Ctrl and click a link
Open the link in a new windowPress Shift and click a link
Open the link in the tabDrag the link to the tab’s address bar
Open the link in a new tabDrag the link to a blank area on the tab strip
Open the webpage in a new tabType a web address (URL) in the address bar, then press Alt + Enter
Return the tab to its original positionWhile dragging the tab, press Esc
Dock a window on the leftAlt + [
Maximize windowAlt + =
Minimize windowAlt + –
Dock a window on the rightAlt + ]
Switch windows between screens (when your Chromebook is connected to a monitor)Search  + Alt + m

Page & Web Browser Keyboard Shortcuts for Chromebooks

Page upSearch  + Up arrow  or Alt + Up arrow 
Page downSearch  + Down arrow  or Alt + Down arrow 
Scroll down the web pageSpace bar
Go to top of pageCtrl + Alt + Up arrow 
Go to bottom of pageCtrl + Alt + Down arrow 
Print your current pageCtrl + p
Save your current pageCtrl + s
Reload your current pageCtrl + r
Reload your current page without using cached contentShift + Ctrl + r
Zoom in on the pageCtrl and +
Zoom out on the pageCtrl and 
Reset zoom levelCtrl + 0
Stop the loading of your current pageEsc
Right-click a linkPress Alt and click a link
Open the link in a new tab in the backgroundPress Ctrl and click a link
Save the link as a bookmarkDrag link to bookmarks bar
Save your current webpage as a bookmarkCtrl + d
Save all open pages in your current window as bookmarks in a new folderShift + Ctrl + d
Search the current pageCtrl + f
Go to the next match for your searchCtrl + g or Enter
Go to the previous match for your searchShift + Ctrl + g or Shift + Enter
Perform a Google searchCtrl k or Ctrl e
Add www. and .com to your input in the address bar, then open the pageCtrl + Enter
View page sourceCtrl + u
Show or hide the Developer Tools panelShift + Ctrl+ i
Show or hide the DOM InspectorShift + Ctrlj
Show or hide the bookmarks barShift Ctrlb
Open the History pageCtrl + h
Open the Downloads pageCtrl + j
Delete selected Autofill suggestion when filling out a formShift + Alt + Backspace

System & Display Setting Keyboard Shortcuts for Chromebooks

Open the Files appShift + Alt + m
Preview a file in the Files appSelect the file, then press Space
Display hidden files in the Files appCtrl + .
Open the status area (where the time appears)Shift + Alt + s
Click icons 1-8 on your shelfAlt + 1 through Alt + 8
Click the last icon on your shelfAlt + 9
Use F keys (F1 to F12)Search  + 1 through Search  + =
See your notificationsShift + Alt + n
Change screen resolutionShift Ctrl and + or 
Reset screen resolution to defaultShift + Ctrl + 0
Rotate screen 90 degreesShift + Ctrl + Rotate 
Switch to the next userCtrl + Alt + .
Switch to the previous userCtrl Alt + ,

Text Editing Keyboard Shortcuts for Chromebooks

Turn Caps Lock on or offSearch  + Alt
Select everything on the pageCtrl + a
Select the content in the address barCtrl + L or Alt + d
Select the next word or letterShift + Ctrl + Right arrow 
Select text to the end of the lineSearch  + Shift + Right arrow 
Select text to the beginning of the lineSearch  + Shift + Left arrow 
Select previous word or letterShift + Ctrl + Left arrow 
Move to the end of the next wordCtrl + Right arrow 
Move to the start of the previous wordCtrl + Left arrow 
Move to beginning of the lineSearch  + Left arrow 
Move to end of the lineSearch  + Right arrow 
Go to end of documentSearch  + Ctrl + Right arrow 
Go to beginning of documentSearch  + Ctrl + Left arrow 
Copy selected content to the clipboardCtrl + c
Paste content from the clipboardCtrl + v
Paste content from the clipboard as plain textShift + Ctrl + v
CutCtrl + x
Delete the previous wordCtrl + Backspace
Delete the next letter (forward delete)Alt + Backspace
Undo your last actionCtrl + z
Redo your last actionShift + Ctrl + z
Switch between the keyboard languages you’ve set.Learn how to choose your keyboard language.Shift + Ctrl + Space
Switch to the previous keyboard language you were using.Learn how to choose your keyboard language.Ctrl + Space
Dim keyboard (for backlit keyboards only)Alt + 
Make keyboard brighter (for backlit keyboards only)Alt + 


Turn ChromeVox (spoken feedback) on or offCtrl + Alt + z
Turn on high contrast modeSearch  + Ctrl + h
Highlight the launcher button on your shelfShift + Alt + L
Highlight the next item on your shelfShift + Alt + L, then Tab or Right arrow 
Highlight the previous item on your shelfShift + Alt + L, then Shift + Tab or Left arrow 
Open the highlighted button on your shelfShift + Alt + L, then Space or Enter
Remove the highlight from a button on your shelfShift + Alt + L, then Esc
Switch focus between:Status area (where the time appears)LauncherAddress barBookmarks bar (if visible)The webpage that’s openDownloads bar (if visible)Ctrl + Back  or Ctrl + Forward 
Highlight the bookmarks bar (if shown)Shift + Alt + b
Highlight the row with the address barShift + Alt + t
Open right-click menu for highlighted itemSearch  + Shift + Increase volume 
Use shortcuts on a braille keyboardSee braille keyboard shortcuts
Magnify your whole screenSearch  + Ctrl + m
Magnify part of your screenSearch  + Ctrl + d

Shortcuts originally posted at