How to use Mac arrow key shortcuts like a pro

Helpful pointers


We've got some handy shortcuts that help you out when you're working on documents on the MacBook family of computers or using any smaller Mac keyboard that lacks the numeric keypad.


I have a problem with the way the Up and Down arrow keys work on my MacBook Air: Whenever I hold down Command + Up/Down arrows, the page jumps to either the very top of the document or the very bottom. Is there a way to change this so that the Up/Down arrow keys move the document in single-page increments?



If you're used to a Windows computer, then move to a MacBook and try using the page up/down command, then the way the Mac handles this may be a bit jolting to you. Fortunately, there is a way to do exactly what you need, and it involves the mysterious and oft-unutilized fn key on the lower-left of the keyboard.

Here are the common arrow-key shortcuts that can be used while editing documents on the Mac (plus another fn-related shortcut for good measure). Most Mac software, including Pages and Word, supports these commands:

  • fn + Up arrow = page up
  • fn + Down arrow = page down
  • fn + Left arrow = home (beginning of document)
  • fn + Right arrow = end of document
  • fn + Delete = forward delete

Hopefully these shortcuts help you to better use office software on your Mac!