How to Use Excel


Introduction to Excel

1. In olden days, human kind crunched numbers with such Primitive tools as pencils, paper and hand held calculators. Our ancestors actually did financial planning by writing the numbers that they punched up on their calculators onto long screen sheets of paper. These green sheets, because they were much wider than they were tall, became known as spreadsheets in Excel. The spreadsheet use fine grid line to divide the large sheet into a series of columns and rows. An electronic spreadsheet program like Excel pays homage to this glorious past by presenting with a facsimile of the old green sheet on the computer screen in the workbook that appears when we start the program. Excel is on of the top spreadsheet programme in industry. MS Word, MS Power Point courses also available.

Starting Excel

2. Several ways to start Microsoft Excel are:-

(a) Click on the Start button, Choose Programs then Click on Microsoft Excel.

(b) From Windows Explorer, double Click on any Excel file. Excel will start and the file will be opened.

(c) Double Click the Excel short cut icon present on the desktop.

Exiting Excel

3. There are several ways to exit Excel:-

(a) Click on the X button in the upper right corner of the Excel window.

(b) Choose File from the top menu bar then click Exit.

Work Book & Work Sheet

4. An Excel document is called a workbook. Workbook is a container for one or more worksheets. Here are something to keep in mind:-

(a) Think of a workbook as a binder.

(b) Think of every worksheet as a page in the binder.

Opening Files in Excel

(a) Click File and then click Open.

(b) Click the Open button in the Standard tool bar.

Saving Files

5. Click File and then click Save. Give some name to the file and then press Ok.

Closing a File or Workbook in Excel

6. Choose File and then click Close from the top menu bar to close the active workbook. If there are unsaved changes, you will be asked if you want to save them.

Renaming a Worksheet

7. Work sheet tabs become a very useful interface for navigating a workbook when sheets have names like Sales Analysis and Forecast instead of sheet 1 and sheet 2. Do one of the following for renaming in MS Excel:

(a) Choose Format click Sheet and then click Rename.

(b) Right Click on a sheet tab, then choose Rename from the short cut menu.

(c) Double click on the sheet tab.

Note. Each of these procedures will cause the sheet on the tab to be highlighted. Simply type the new name, then press Enter.

Cell in Excel

8. A worksheet consists of vertical columns and rows. A cell is the area where a column and a row meet. The cell is addressed by Column-Row method like A1, D8. A1 means first cell in column A and D8 means cell no 8 in column D.

Types of Cell Data

9. There are four distinct types of data that can reside in a cell. They are text, numbers, logical, Date/Time and error values.

(a) Text. Text in a cell can include any combination of letters, numbers and keyboard symbols.

(b) Numbers. The most common thing that is done with spreadsheet programs is numeric calculations. Here are some important things to understand about the way Excel treat numbers:

(i) A number may be displayed using commas, scientific notation or one of may built in numeric formats.

(ii) Dates and times are number but with special formatting.

(iii) When an unformatted number does not fit in a cell, it is displayed in scientific notation.

(iv) When a formatted number does not fit in a cell, number signs (# # # # ) are displayed in Excel.

(c) Logical. Logical values TRUE and FALSE can enter into the cells.

(d) Date/Time. Store the date and time values.

(e) Error. Formula errors are displayed as a value.

Entering Data into a Cell

10. To enter data into a cell in Excel, simply do the following:

(a) Select the cell by clicking it.

(b) Type numbers, text or a combination of both.

(c) Press Enter

Editing a Cell

11. There are two places in Excel where editing can be done, in the formula bar or in the cell itself:-

(a) Formula Bar. Select the cell then click in the formula bar. The insertion point is placed at the end of the cell contents.

(b) In Cell. Double click on the cell or select the cell and press F2. The insertion point is placed at the end of the cell contents

Undoing Cell Entries and Edits

(a) If you haven’t yet pressed enter while entering or editing changes can be cancelled by pressing Esc or click the cancel button.

(b) If you are already pressed enter choose Edit and then press Undo or simply click the Undo button in Excel.

Clearing a Cell

(a) For clearing a cell choose Edit and then press Delete from the top of menu bar.

(b) Delete key can also use for clearing a cell in MS excel.

Selecting Cells in Excel

12. Selecting a range with the mouse. Here’s how to select a range of cells by dragging:-

(a) Click on a cell at a corner of the range, but don’t release the mouse.

(b) Drag the mouse to select the range.

(c) Once the desired range is selected, release the mouse button.

13. Selecting a range with keyboard are:-

Keystroke Selects of Microsoft Excel

(a) Ctrl + Spacebar To select entire column

(b) Shift + Spacebar To select entire row

(c) Ctrl + Shift + Spacebar To select entire worksheet

(d) End, Shift + Arrow keys To extends selection to end of data


(e) End, Shift + Home To extends selection to lower right

corner of worksheet

(f) End, Shift + Enter To Extends selections to last cell in

Current row of data block

14. Easiest way of moving and copying cells using drag and drop is given:-

(a) Select the cells you want to move.

(b) Point to an outside border of the selected range using the mouse. The mouse pointer will turn into an arrow.

(c) Click on the selection, drag the cells to a new location, and then release the mouse button.

(d) The cells will now be positioned in the new location.

Inserting and Deleting Cells in MS Excel

15. To insert cells, select the cells where you want to perform the insertion and use the following methods:-

(a) Right click on the selection to display the short cut menu, and choose Insert.

(b) From the insert menu do one of the followings

(i) Choose the Rows command to insert entire rows.

(ii) Choose the columns command to insert entire columns.

(iii) Choose the cells command to insert a range of cells. The insert dialog box is displayed, asking how the insertion should occur.

(c) For deleting the cells, select the cells you want to delete.

Choose Edit > Delete from the top of menu bar of Excel.

Note A. If you select an entire row or column, the row or column is deleted immediately.

B. If you select a single cell or group of single cells, then dialog box (Delete dialog box) appeared and going the opportunity what to delete.

Changing Row Height and Column Width

16. Select any cell(s) in the column of excel, you want to resize, then choose Format Column from the top menu bar. The submenu appears, you can notice that the row height works just like column width.

Formulas and Functions in Excel

17. Excel offers its users a wealth of options for charting and calculating the data in worksheets. In this chapter we will learn to use cell references, external references and file links.

18. A formula is essentially a sequence of values and operators that begins with an equal sign (=) and produces a new value. Excel comes with several hundred built in formulas, called functions, which are designed to perform many different kinds of calculations.

19. Formulas in Excel share some basic properties:-

(a) All formulas begin with an equal sign.

(b) After a formula is entered, the resulting value is displayed in the cell.

(c) When a cell containing a formula is selected the under lying formula is displayed in the formula bar.

Entering a Formula Manually

20. To enter a formula into a cell simply select desire cell and start typing formula. The first character must be an equal sign. For example:-

(a) Select cell A1 on a blank worksheet.

(b) Enter = 1+2 then press enter. The resulting value, 3 appears in the cell.



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