How to Learn the Qwerty Computer Keyboard

Written by stephen lilley
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How to Learn the Qwerty Computer Keyboard
A standard computer keyboard is called a QWERTY keyboard. (Keyboard image by S.Q T from

"QWERTY" is the name given to a computer keyboard with a standard layout. It is called "QWERTY" because the Q, W, E, R, T and Y keys are the first five keys in the top row of the keyboard. Properly understanding the layout and design of the QWERTY keyboard can lead to faster typing and increased productivity. Though it may seem counter intuitive at first, you can quickly get the hang of a QWERTY keyboard and type a lot faster than you used to in no time at all.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Learn which keys are the "Home Row" keys. These are the A, S, D and F keys and the J, K, L and semicolon keys. Your left hand should be placed on the A, S, D and F keys as you type, and your right hand should be placed on the J, K, L and semicolon keys as you type. If your hands are placed in these positions, you can easily access any other key on the keyboard without looking down to see where you're typing.

  2. 2

    Type while looking at the keyboard for the beginning part of your learning process. If you need to, you can look at the keyboard while you type. But do not remove your hands from the home row keys. Instead pay close attention to the way your hand is moving as you type, and where certain keys are in relation to the home row keys. Over time, you will slowly start to instinctively pick up what movements your hand needs to make to type certain words.

  3. 3

    Type without looking at the keyboard (once you have become comfortable enough to do so). Once you get a basic idea of where all the keys are, start looking only at your monitor when you type. If you type very slow during this process that's OK--at this point you should not be concerned at all with speed, but instead with accuracy. Look at the words you're typing on screen and make sure you're hitting all of the correct keys at the correct times.

  4. 4

    Type the alphabet. One way to quickly learn how to both improve your speed as well as your knowledge of where the keyboard keys are is to type the alphabet, over and over again. This will teach you the exact locations of all of the keys and where you need to move which fingers in order to strike them. Continue this process until you feel you have increased your typing speed to an acceptable level, or to the point where you feel you no longer have to look down at the keyboard when you type.

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