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Alternatives to Printing

GreenPrint is Roosevelt's fee-based printing system, available in the libraries, labs, and computer classrooms. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of this system and minimize your reliance on printing.

Review your print jobs before releasing them to the printer:

The GreenPrint system gives you several chances to review your print request before you swipe your card and send the doc to the printer. Check the number of pages that are about to be printed, and if it's more than you expect, go back and review the document.

Manage your documents electronically:

Do you really need to save all your documents in paper form? An inexpensive USB drive can store huge amounts of data. You can carry in your pocket hundreds more pages than you could ever carry in print. (Important: electronically stored documents are easily deleted. Be sure to keep at least one backup copy of every document that's important to you).

Save your research data electronically:

When you gather information from web sites or library databases, take advantage of electronic storage tools. At a minimum you can use the "Save As" function in your browser to save the page to a USB drive. Some databases let you save the results on a server, download them as a file, or email them to yourself.

Proofread before printing, not after:

Try to identify and correct any errors before you send documents to the printer. The "Print Preview" function available in most programs is great for letting you see how a document will look in print. Watch out for blank pages at the end of your document -- you'll have to pay for them even though they don't contain any information.

Avoid unnecessary reprinting:

If an error manages to slip through to a printed document, don't reprint more pages than necessary. Use your software to submit only the page number or numbers ("Print Preview" is great for this purpose) you want to reprint.

Preview HTML pages before printing:

Many web pages are built for viewing online only, not for printing. Some web pages can be printed on one page while others may go on for dozens (or hundreds!) of pages. That short article in your browser window may only be the tip of the iceberg. If you print the page on display without checking to see how many pages the document is, it could cost you. Use "Print Preview" (typically located on the File menu) to identify and submit only the page or range of pages you need. NOTE: When you are doing research for a paper be sure to print the page that contains the title, author and publication information -- you'll need it to cite your source.

Ask about submitting your work electronically:

Check with your instructors to see if you can turn in your work in electronically rather than in printed form. Sometimes this is not practical, but if it is, you can save trees and printing costs. Electronic markup tools are now available that match, and even improve on, traditional handwritten comments. The Digital Drop Box feature of Blackboard is ideal for handling electronic document exchange.