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Help with double-clicking

Top Tip: Inclusive Technology's fun MouseSkills External Link program is a great way to assess and improve mouse control.

Double-clicking is a difficult task for many individuals. The physical process is a complex one - holding the mouse absolutely still while rapidly repeating the click requires very precise fine motor control. It can also be difficult to know when to double-click and when to single-click. I've always found that you best bet is to do a single-click first and if nothing seems to happen you can try a double-click.

There are two possible solutions available:

Slowing down double-clicks

The speed required to perform a successful double-click can be slowed a little without the need to install specialist software. However slowing the double-click can have its disadvantages. You may find that your pupil begins to double-click things too often when he or she is simply mean to select an object rather than open it.

Start Menu

Open up the Windows Control Panel by going to Start and selecting Control Panel from the menu.

If there is no Control Panel in your Start Menu then your school's technician or network administrator has stopped you from being able to access it!

Control Panel

Within the Control Panel, locate the 'Mouse' icon and double-click it to open the Mouse options.

If you struggle with double-clicking then you can click on it once to highlight it, and then press the enter key to open it.

Mouse Button Properties

At the bottom of the dialog window that appears is an option for changing the double-click speed of your mouse.

Drag the slider to the left to slow down the required speed for double-clicking.

If you have difficulty dragging with the mouse then simply perform a regular click on the slider and then use your keyboard's left and right arrow keys to adjust its position.

You can then practice your double-clicking on the jack-in-the-box in the test area.


Doing away with double-clicking

If adjusting the speed doesn't work for you then you can do away with double-clicking altogether. This is especially useful for people who use a switch to activate their mouse button(s).

The easiest way of dropping the double-click is to use a single-click to highlight followed by pressing the Enter key to launch. Try it on one of your desktop icons. Click on an icon once to highlight it, then as you press enter key you should see you've performed the same action as a double-click.

Alternatively in Windows 98 and above it is possible to easily replace all double-clicks with single-clicks. Here's how to do it:

Folder Options Menu Item

Open up Windows Explorer by going to your Start Menu and selecting My Computer.

Alternatively you can press the Windows Key and E.

In the Explorer Window go to the Tools menu and select Folder Options.

Folder Options Dialog

Up pops the Folder Options dialog. Howdy!

Under the 'Click items as follows' you'll see that there's a single-click option.

Select this option and click on OK.

You should now notice that desktop icons, files, and folders can now all be opened with a single-click. This even includes most programs' Open File dialogs.

All these objects will now be underlined (such as on most websites) and they will highlight when you hover over them with the mouse cursor.

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