How to use Microsoft Office Excel

How to use Microsoft Office Excel

A Beginner's Guide to Using Microsoft Office Excel: Basic Steps and Tips

Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet program that allows you to organize, calculate, and analyze data. It is a powerful tool that can be used for a variety of tasks, such as creating budgets, tracking sales, and managing inventory.

Here are some basic steps on how to use Microsoft Excel:

  1. Open Excel.
    Click the Start button and type "Excel". Then, click the Microsoft Excel app.
  2. Create a new workbook.
    Click the "File" tab and then click "New". Under "Blank workbook", click "Create".
  3. Enter data.
    Click a cell and then type your data. You can enter text, numbers, dates, and formulas.
  4. Format your data.
    You can change the font, size, color, and alignment of your data. You can also add borders and shading.
  5. Calculate data.
    You can use formulas to calculate values in your spreadsheet. For example, you can use the "SUM" formula to add up the values in a range of cells.
  6. Sort and filter data.
    You can sort your data in ascending or descending order. You can also filter your data to show only certain values.
  7. Create charts and graphs.
    You can create charts and graphs to visualize your data. This can help you to see trends and patterns in your data.
  8. Print your spreadsheet.
    Click the "File" tab and then click "Print". You can choose to print your entire spreadsheet or just a selected range of cells.

These are just a few basic steps on how to use Microsoft Excel. There are many more features and functions that you can learn about. For more information, you can consult the Microsoft Excel help file or search online for tutorials.

Here are some additional tips for using Microsoft Excel:

  • Use keyboard shortcuts to save time. There are many keyboard shortcuts that you can use to perform common tasks in Excel. For example, you can press Ctrl+N to create a new workbook, Ctrl+S to save your work, and Ctrl+Z to undo a change.
  • Use named ranges to refer to groups of cells. Named ranges make it easier to refer to groups of cells in your formulas. For example, you could create a named range for your sales data and then use that name in your formulas instead of typing out the entire range of cells.
  • Use conditional formatting to highlight important data. Conditional formatting allows you to automatically format cells based on their values. For example, you could highlight all cells that contain a value greater than 100 in red.
  • Use charts and graphs to visualize your data. Charts and graphs can help you to see trends and patterns in your data. This can be helpful for making decisions and communicating your findings to others.
  • Use Excel templates to save time. Excel templates are pre-made workbooks that you can use to get started with a variety of tasks. For example, there are templates for budgets, invoices, and tracking sales.
Making an electronic spreadsheet with Microsoft Office Excel

To get started with Excel, you should click on the Excel icon in the Windows Start menu or on the Launchpad in macOS if you are using a Mac. Once the program is launched, you will be prompted to select a template for data transmission.

For example, you can choose the Academic Calendar template to create an electronic agenda or the Dependent Ascension Planning template to manage the holidays and sick days of your dependents.

In this case, however, I will guide you through how Excel works using a prototype. Therefore, select the Work Credentials option to access the Microsoft Excel electronic file.

You will be presented with a worksheet that is divided into columns and rows. The columns are identified by alphabetic letters, while the rows are identified by a progressive numbering system. In addition, there are several shortcuts in the top bar that provide access to all of Excel's features.

In the following paragraphs, I will explain how to use some of the most significant features that are available in Excel. It is important to pay close attention to these instructions in order to fully understand how the software functions.

Formatting Cells with Microsoft Office Excel

Excel's calculation sheet is composed of numerous cells. Double-clicking on a cell will bring you to the Modify mode, where you can enter any type of data or formula. Just like in Microsoft Word, you can format text in Excel to display data in an accurate and organized manner if you need to present your work to others.

To format text, navigate to the Home tab and find the buttons divided into categories. Under the character section, you can choose the font, character size (bold [B], italic [I], and underline [U]), color, and style. Under the Alignment section, you can align the text to the left, right, or center, or create paragraph breaks.

In the Numbers section, you can specify how Excel should behave when data is entered into a cell. By clicking on the "General" menu item and selecting the Import Data Style option, you can choose whether the data should be imported as text, a number, a value, or another data type.

In the Celle section, you can change the size of columns and rows and add or remove new ones. If you have your data in a table, you can apply filters using the "Sort" and "Filter" functions located in the "Modify" section. By applying filters to cells that include column headings, you can filter data using the icon represented by the symbol (▼).

If you need to use Excel as a calculator and perform quick calculations, you can refer to the SUM function under the Modify tab. This function allows you to perform an algebraic sum of the values contained inside a user-defined interval. You can select other calculating factors such as the median and the range of values by clicking the icon with the symbol (▼) next to this function.

Insert pivot tables and graphics with Microsoft Office Excel

Excel offers another useful function for creating pivot tables that allow you to summarize and organize data according to user-defined parameters.

To create a pivot table, go to the Insert tab and click on the Pivot Table button. A window will appear on the screen prompting you to enter data from an existing range and the cell where Excel should generate the pivot table. After confirming the required information, you will see the types of data to drag into the Filters, Columns, Rows, or Values fields in the right sidebar.

Moreover, within the Insert tab, you can use Excel to create charts, which graphically represent data. You can create histograms, line charts, scatter plots, or pie charts. In short, you have all the chart types you need to organize your work data.

The specific buttons for each type of chart can be found in the Charts section or by clicking on the Recommended Charts button and then selecting the All Charts tab in the screen that appears.

Insert Formulas in Microsoft Office Excel

Excel's functions are another essential feature that allow users to perform calculations and extract information from user-defined ranges.

With a vast array of functions available, grouped by category according to their area of use, Excel provides a wide range of tools. For instance, functions can be found within categories such as Financial, Statistical, Logical, or Mathematical.

To insert a function, simply select a cell, click on the Insert Function button located in the Function Library section of the Formulas tab, and search for the function that best suits your needs.

For example, to convert the text in a cell to uppercase, select the adjacent cell and insert the UPPER(...) function, as I explained earlier. In the function's argument screen, select the cell you want to convert, and click OK to see the result of the function immediately.


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