How to scroll with a laptop keyboard

If your Apple Mac trackpad or Windows touchpad is damaged or if you just don’t like using it, you can navigate pages quickly and easily using the laptop's keyboard keys. While it may not feel as intuitive as using the gestures of a trackpad or touchpad, you’ll eventually get used to using the keyboard commands to locate what you need in a document or web page. Keyboard scrolling is also an important accessibility feature for computer users with dexterity issues and disabilities preventing them from using a mouse or other keyboard scrolling interface.

Scrolling up and down

Click the up or down arrow, typically located at the bottom right of the keyboard. This will move the page you’re viewing up or down by a small amount. Doing this moves the page up or down a line at a time, although this may vary according to the machine you’re using and the browser or document type you’re viewing.

Click the “Page Up,” or “Page Down,” key. This scrolls the distance of one page’s worth of screen space. This method is handy if you’re scanning through a document or website and want to find a specific heading or section. It’s too much scrolling if you’re trying to read a document in its entirety.

Press the spacebar to scroll down in a web page or non-editable viewport. A non-editable viewport is any page where your keystrokes can’t change the content, for example a locked PDF or system command page. The spacebar approximates the effect of using a scroll wheel, so the page will drop by a few lines.

Push “Shift” and the spacebar together to scroll up the screen.

Use the “End” key to scroll to the end of a document. Use the “Home” key to scroll to the start. If using a Mac laptop, use “Fn” and the up or down arrow to execute the same command.

Scrolling left and right

Use the left and right arrows to navigate through a page or document.

Use the “Tab” key to navigate between frames on a webpage. For example, if you’re filling in an online form, the “Tab” key quickly moves the cursor from one box to the next.

Press “Shift-Tab” together to move to the previous frame or box. This command is the same for both Mac and Windows machines.

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About the Author

Simon Foden has been a freelance writer and editor since 1999. He began his writing career after graduating with a Bachelors of Arts degree in music from Salford University. He has contributed to and written for various magazines including "K9 Magazine" and "Pet Friendly Magazine." He has also written for