Tips and Tricks Parramatta College

Tips and Tricks

Provided by our experienced teachers.

PowerPoint colour usage

Avoid using these colour combinations:

  • Green, Yellow, or Purple on a Green Background
  • Light Colours on a White Background
  • Neon or Rainbow Colours
  • Coloured, Textured Background with Coloured Text
  • Red, Blue, or Purple on Black Background
  • White Gradient with White Text
  • Multiple Coloured Boxes
  • Yellow, Blue, and Magenta on Red Background
  • Bright Blue Background
  • Pale Yellow Background

Safely using public computers

If you are using someone elses computer eg library, netcafe or one at work, there is always the risk that someone can get your keystrokes. This is most concerning when you go into private areas such as banking etc where you input a password and user name. One way around others not getting this confidential detail is by placing these on your USB memory stick via a notepad file. Then when you go to these sites, simply open this file, then copy and paste in the fields as required on the web. No one then can duplicate the entries into these fields, thus you are safe guarded.

Backup your files

If you have a computer with Windows 7 (or other versions) remember to set up a backup regime so the chances of losing all your files in a computer hard drive fail will be minimised. Go to the Control Panel and select Back Up. Have an external drive handy that is the same size or bigger than your computer hard drive. Now follow the prompts and set up the back up. You can tell the computer what to back up, where to back up and finally when to back up. The scheduler is handy so you can set and forget. Set the scheduler for a weekly backup as a minimum so the most you lose is one week. Organisations often backup their computers overnight every night.

Create a Startup Disk

Sometimes the operating system in your computer gets sick. This can cause a lot of heart ache when you cannot get your computer to ‘boot-up’ and start. One way around this is the system repair disk. Click Start > Maintenance > Create a System Repair Disc, and let Windows 7 build a bootable emergency disc. You might need to know if your computer is 32 or 64 bit – you can find this out by going Control Panel > System. If it is a 64 bit system, it will say so in the system information. Then if your system fails place the disk in the CD/DVD drive and restart your computer. If the problem isn’t too complex then the disk will repair the problem. If it doesn’t or you are still experiencing problems then take your computer to the computer shop.

Converting a Table to Text

Ever had the problem of importing data from an Excel document or creating and filling a table and then deciding you don’t want a table after all? Well you don’t have to drag the data out and then delete the table or even retype the data. All you need do is select the table, go to Layout>Convert to text. In the dialogue box that appears you can select what you want to separate the text – tabs, paragraphs or other. Then click OK. Your table will be converted to text!


When chairing a meeting remain impartial, keep the meeting on track, maintain control and keep to timelines. These tips will ensure successful meeting outcomes.
Prepare a checklist of topics to consider before you call a meeting and then decide if a meeting is necessary or can the issues be covered electronically.

Business tasks

Before undertaking any task. Think twice and do once. Don’t leave customer services only to front line staff. Support from everyone will enable delivery of good service at every level. If you don’t take positive action on received complaints you will have lost that customer, who tells another potential customer and so on…………


A positive role model has the ability to show compassion and forgiveness. Are you perfect?

Business Planning

Undertake a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis in your business planning process to determine whether objectives are attainable. If not select different ones that are attainable. This should maximise the benefits of this evaluation and find the competitive advantage.

Mouse and Keyboard maintenance

Clean older mouse with a rolling ball by rubbing with a swab soaked in cleaning fluid. The optic mouse is not affected by dirt. Only clean the outside casing with a damp cloth.
Keyboards can be cleaned with compressed air. Never spray fluid down between the keys. A simple wipe with a dampened alcohol cloth will disinfect the keyboard. Remember to turn off the computer first.

Got a tip or trick you would like to share with us? email us