See image below. These buttons used in an application to move between first, last, next, and previous records.

I've seen them referred to as "VCR buttons". As that technology becomes less common (and familiar) I'd prefer to use something else, but nothing obvious comes to mind.

Please don't call these VCR buttons


I'm specifically looking for how to word these in task-centric documentation. For example.

  1. In the pagination buttons, click First.

I generally follow the Microsoft Manual of Style for wording selection, but I don't see this scenario covered there.

  • 2
    Back-and-Forth Skippy Pressers is what I'd go with. Commented Aug 11, 2016 at 20:31

3 Answers 3


Why not show the user what buttons you're talking about in the documentation itself?

Using the terminology @AndrewMartin suggested, you could include this simple reference image so that you can ensure that the user knows, unambiguously, what controls you're talking about.enter image description here

  • I was just going to suggest the same thing: Define the buttons along with their names within the documentation. Commented Aug 12, 2016 at 14:12

They are also referred to as paging controls.


As has already been suggested, they could collectively be "pagination controls" including (from left to right) "skip to first", "previous", "select", "next", and "skip to last".

But realistically you call them whatever is understood by the client/team you're working with - it's them that need to understand what you're referring to.

  • While it's true that the best answer is whatever is understood by the intended audience, what I'm looking for is language that works in a global context (i.e. I can't assume English is the reader's first language). I'm specifically looking for how to refer to these in user documentation. I'll clarify the question. Commented Aug 12, 2016 at 13:04
  • If you are looking for specific, in that case straight away add an image, just like you mentioned "1. In the pagination buttons, click <image> first." Commented Aug 12, 2016 at 15:08

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