Organized Charm: Computer File Organization

Friday, October 17, 2014

Computer File Organization



Today’s post is about computer file organization. This is one of those topics where a picture is worth a thousand words… so I’ve included a ton of photos to help explain it! The main rule that I follow for organized computer files is to name every document and file it in the correct place the first time you use it! This way, you will always know where to look for it! I also like to name things by their complete, full, name with a date… just in case there are multiple documents for the same project (which there usually are). 

Here is my desktop screen. I keep one folder for each big thing in my life (you know, the ones that produce a lot of Excel & Word documents). For me, they are school, this blog, and school. For you, they may be each individual class… or sorority commitments… or work. Just whatever the 3/4 (5, 6, 7) biggest document-producing things in your life are right now!


This is my “University of Memphis folder”. I got this computer in 2012, so that’s why these files start there. If a file is active, it’s highlighted in green; if it’s “closed” it’s highlighted in gray. This just makes it super easy for me to click through the correct files more quickly!


Within my “2014” folder, there are two smaller folders, one for each semester.
Within the “Fall” semester folder, there are folders for each of my classes. So, right now I’m kind of considering graduation a class because there are so many deadlines to meet and so much paperwork to fill out that it really feels like an additional class!


This is the only class I’m in this semester (which is how I’ve been able to post almost everyday). Within this class, we are really working on one big project for the entirety of the semester! However, we did still have to do some of those crazy online discussion (they are my nemesis. seriously). But now we’re done with discussions, so the folder is gray. My project is still active, plus this professor sends out additional instructions in his e-mails, so I copy them to Word docs and save them in a folder.


I typically give each large assignment/paper/project its own folder. In this class’ case, we have one large (60ish page) paper but we’re writing it about 10 pages at a time. Below are the different sections of the paper that we have worked on so far. The green ones are the ones that are still in progress, whereas the gray ones are the ones that have been approved/finalized. Organizing projects like this enables me to be able to take notes, copy articles, type outlines etc. and to keep them in the folder of the project they’re for. 


For example, this is the “References” folder pictured above. Of course, there are even more folders… I saved any articles that cited strategies in the “Strategies” folder, any articles I’d like to cite in the “Articles” folder, there is an APA checklist (because there is always SOMETHING that’s a space off or not italicized)! Then I also created a couple of Word documents with quotes that I liked or possible references. 


Finally, here is the inside of the “Articles” folder. As you guessed, it contains articles that I’ve downloaded from online. 


Anyway, so that’s it! That is how I’m able to find all of my documents whenever I’m looking for them!

Now if I could just do something about all those 10,000 photos in my computer… :)



How do you organize your computer files? Is this too detailed for you or do you think it would help keep things together? 
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