StickyKeys (Windows XP)

Difficulties holding down two keys simultaneously

While most of the options for the Mouse are in the Mouse Control Panel, most of Windows’ options for making the keyboard accessible are in the ‘Accessibility Options’. Makes sense? Not really.

Anyway, holding down more than one key at a time is needed to produce the symbols above the the numbers as well as an assortment of shortcut keys (e.g. CTRL+P to Print) and several other situations. It is also quicker than using CAPS LOCK for doing Single Capital Letters.

However – many people find it difficult to hold down two keys at the same time – especially if they’re a fair distance apart, like right ALT and P.

Fortunately there’s a feature built right into Windows that allows you to press one at a time. It’s called StickyKeys and here’s how to get it working:

Select Control Panel from the 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!

Windows Key, Arrow Keys (to select Control Panel), Enter

Control Panel

Double-click on the ‘Accessiblity Options’ icon to launch the applet.

A (to select Accessibility Options), Enter

Keyboard Accessibility Options

Inside here there are lots of options for the keyboard, as well as a few for Windows’ sound, display, and mouse.

You should see StickyKeys at the top of the window.

Put a tick in the white box to enable this feature.

Before clicking OK I would recommend you click the Settings button…

StickyKeys Options

Notice that on this page there is an option that reads ‘Turn StickyKeys off if two keys are pressed at once’.

For most pupils it would be best to make sure that this box is not checked, else StickyKeys could easily be turned off accidentally.

StickyKeys can be quickly enabled on most Windows computers by pressing the SHIFT key five times in quick succession.

The Control Panel doesn’t allow StickyKeys to be enabled at Windows Logon but I have a short article explaining a way around all this.

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