Copy & Paste Life Hack: A Must-Know for Online Tutors

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(Life hack discussed in this post works on Windows 10 and Mac OS)

Copying and pasting images is very, very common in online tutoring sessions. Sometimes you want to work on a photo of a question your student had sent, sometimes you want to copy a part of a webpage to your session notes. Reasons vary, but what is certain is, becoming an online tutor involves lots of copying and pasting images.

To become great online tutors we need to keep our students happy. And keeping students happy involves spending quality time together. All that time we have to waste while saving an image, finding it on our computer, importing it to the notebook etc could be better-spent teaching, or looking for more online tutoring jobs. The trick we will learn in this article is going to help us copy images and use them quickly. This will give us more time for teaching, therefore improve the quality of our online tutoring sessions.

Step 1: Use a Notebook That Supports Directly Pasting the Copied Images

This starts with using a notebook to which you can directly paste images from your clipboard. In other words, after you copied an image (for example, by the pressing the print screen button), you should be able to paste it directly to your notebook by pressing Ctrl + V (or Command + V on Mac). As we have discussed on our post about best free online whiteboards, most popular notebook choices have this property. For example, OneNote, ZiteBoard, Bitpaper, they all allow pasting images directly to the board (you do not have to use the “import image” option).

If you are using another notebook, you can test your notebook by pressing print screen to take a screenshot of your screen, and pasting it on your notebook directly.

Step 2: Copy Part of a Screen to Your Clipboard

Being able to copy a part of the screen directly makes things much faster. A common method is pressing print screen, copying the whole screen, pasting it on an editor and cropping the desired part of the image. If you can copy that part of the screen right away, you don’t have to go through this editing process.

On Windows 10: Press Shift + Windows key + S. Your screen becomes darker and your cursor turns into a plus sign. You are expected to pick the portion of your screen you would like to copy. Click on the screen, and while holding the mouse button, draw a rectangle around the part that you want to copy. When you release the mouse button the selected part of your screen is copied to the clipboard. Below you can see how it looks:

Copy A Part Of The Screen

On Mac, the process is almost identical, except the key combination you use is Command + Control + Shift + 4.

Now that you copied the desired image to your clipboard, time to paste it directly to your notebook.

Step 3: Paste the Copied Image to Your Notebook

You paste the image just like you paste any other image. You can use Ctrl + V on Windows or Command + V on Mac. And the region you picked by drawing a rectangle on your screen a moment ago appears directly on your notebook:

Problem pasted to OneNote Notebook

Now you are ready to work on the question your student had sent. You did not save any images to your computer, you haven’t done any cropping in an editor, you did not click any “import” button. The image you are interested in is on your notebook immediately. After a bit of practice you should be able to do copy-paste with this method in a couple of seconds.

You can use this method to copy anything on your screen, it is like a more efficient way of capturing your screen with print screen. I use this method a lot in my online tutoring and I hope it will be useful for you as well. Thanks!


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