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Spreadsheets for Dummies

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This document introduces users to basic Excel tasks, such as creating, saving, and opening new Excel workbooks and worksheets; selecting, copying, and moving data; constructing formulas; formatting worksheets; and setting up worksheets for printing. It is used in conjunction with the ACS Excel Introduction workshop.
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Excel Introduction
Academic Computing Services
www.ku.edu/acs
Abstract: This document introduces users to basic Excel tasks, such as
creating, saving, and opening new Excel workbooks and
worksheets; selecting, copying, and moving data; constructing
formulas; formatting worksheets; and setting up worksheets for
printing. It is used in conjunction with the ACS Excel
Introduction
workshop.
Contents
Introduction ....................................................................................................................... 2
Objectives ......................................................................................................................... 2
Prerequisites ..................................................................................................................... 2
Related Training Available from ACS................................................................................ 2
Definitions ......................................................................................................................... 3
Creating and Opening Excel Workbooks .......................................................................... 3
Inside an Excel Worksheet................................................................................................ 5
Creating Formulas........................................................................................................... 10
Editing & Deleting Formulas............................................................................................ 12
Copying Formulas and Values ........................................................................................ 12
Changing the Workbook or Worksheet Appearance....................................................... 15
Getting Additional Help ................................................................................................... 22
© 2002University of Kansas. All rights reserved

ACS Computer Training
Excel Introduction
Introduction
Excel is a spreadsheet that allows users to create worksheets in that store information in
workbook files. The built-in functions allow users to also create and edit formulas; copy
and move data; format worksheets; and set up worksheets for printing.
Objectives
The goal of this workshop is to introduce participants to the introductory commands and
features of the Excel program. After today's workshop, participants will be able to:
• Create, open, and save Excel workbooks
• Select, copy, and move data
• Create formulas using relative and absolute references
• Format worksheets
• Use Page Setup to set up worksheets for printing
Prerequisites
It is assumed that the participants in this workshop have basic computing skills and know
how to use the Macintosh or Windows operating system to maintain files and
directories/subdirectories, open, close, and save files.
Related Training Available from ACS
All ACS workshops are free to KU students, staff, faculty, and approved affiliates. The
general public is also welcome to most workshops, but some ACS workshops require a
registration fee for them.
To learn more about or register for workshops, receive automatic announcements of
upcoming workshops, and track workshops you’ve registered for and have attended, visit
the ACS Web site at www.ku.edu/acs/train. You can also check our online schedule at
www.ku.edu/acs/schedule for a list of class offerings and their availability. For further
workshop related questions, please email training@ku.edu.
EXCEL: CHARTING
This three-hour, hands-on workshop introduces using Excel to create and edit charts,
modify chart options, format chart objects, as well as use trend lines, forecasts, and error
bars to present data graphically. In addition, students will learn to insert Excel charts in
other programs like PowerPoint or Word.
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ACS Computer Training
Excel Introduction
Definitions
Term
Definition
Active Cell
A cell that is selected.
Cell
Cells form where rows and columns intersect. To refer to a cell, enter
the column letter followed by the row number. For example, C15 refers
to the cell at the intersection of column C and row 15.
Workbook
In Excel, a workbook is the file in which you work and store your data.
Because each workbook can contain many sheets, you can organize
various kinds of related information in a single file. By default, all new
workbooks contain three worksheets.
Worksheet
Worksheets consist of cells that are organized into alphabetical labeled
(Spreadsheet) columns and numerically labeled rows and are always located within
workbooks. They are used to list, organize, and calculate data.
Information can be linked from one worksheet to another in the same
workbook or in different workbooks.
Creating and Opening Excel Workbooks
Opening Excel
When you first open the Excel program, a new workbook (Book1) will be created
automatically with three worksheets. Each worksheet will be labeled Sheet1, Sheet2, and
Sheet3. Worksheet tabs can be found at the bottom of the workbook window. To move
from sheet to sheet, you can click the sheet tabs.
Each worksheet contains 65,536 rows and 256 columns. The columns are labeled
alphabetically and run along the top of the worksheet. The rows are labeled numerically
and run along the left side of the worksheet. Columns are labeled A through Z, AA
through AZ, BA through BZ, etc. Rows are numbered from 1 through 65,536. A cell
forms where these rows and columns intersect. The scroll bars on the right and along the
bottom of the worksheet can be used to scroll to any location of the worksheet.
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© 2002The University of Kansas

ACS Computer Training
Excel Introduction
With Excel Open
If you already have Excel open and want to create a new plain workbook, you can click
on the New button. If you want to create a new workbook from a template, you can
click on File!New to see Excel’s built in templates or custom templates.

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ACS Computer Training
Excel Introduction
Opening An Existing Workbook
You can always opening existing workbook files as well. To do this:
1. Click
on
File!Open or click on the yellow Open folder on the Standard toolbar.

2. Change the folder (if needed) to find the file you want.
3. Select the file name and double click on it or click on the Open button.
Inside an Excel Worksheet
Pointer Appearances
In an Excel spreadsheet, your pointer appearance will change dependent upon where you
are in the worksheet. It is important to understand the distinction between these mouse
pointer types:
Name
Appearance
Description
Cross (Puffy Plus):


Used to select a cell or a range of cells.
I-Beam:

When you see an I-Beam, click one time for a blinking
insertion point that will allow you to type in text.
Mouse Pointer:

The pointer is this shape when using toolbars, moving
and resizing windows, and when moving or copying
information from cells.
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ACS Computer Training
Excel Introduction

Selecting Parts of a Worksheet
There are lots of reasons to select, or click, in different areas of your workbook. We
select cells to enter, change, and delete information. We select cells for formulas to
reference. We also select cells to format their contents. Any time we select a cell, we
call it an active cell.
Using the Mouse
Here are many ways to make a cell active by clicking or clicking and dragging with your
mouse:
Item Selected
How to Select
Cell
Click on the cell.
Cell Range
Use the Cross (Puffy Plus) to click and
drag across the group of cells.
Row
Click on the row number.
Column
Click on the column letter.
Multiple Rows
Click and drag down the row numbers.
Multiple Columns
Click and drag across the column letters.
Entire Worksheet
Click the gray cell between column A and
row 1.
Non-Contiguous Cells Select the first cell or range of cells and
then hold down the Ctrl key while
selecting the remaining cells.
Using the Keyboard
The keyboard is also a great way to move around inside of Excel workbooks and
worksheets. Here are just a few common keystrokes or keyboard shortcuts:
Key
Direction
Enter
Moves the active cell down, row to row.
Tab
Moves the active cell to the right, column to column.
Shift/Enter
Moves the active cell up, row to row.
Shift/Tab
Moves the active cell to the left, column to column.
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© 2002The University of Kansas

ACS Computer Training
Excel Introduction
Ctrl/Home
Moves the active cell to A1.
Ctrl/End
Moves the active cell the last cell that contains data.
Ctrl/Page Down
Moves from one worksheet to another.
& Ctrl/Page Up
F2 key (function Opens the active cell for you to edit the data in it.
key)
Alt/Enter
Enters a hard return inside of the active cell. This
will automatically wrap your text and increase the
size of the cell.
Cell Contents
In Excel, you can enter four types of values: text, numbers, dates and times, and
formulas. Each cell can hold up to 32,767 characters.
Text
In Excel, text is any combination of numbers, spaces, and nonnumeric characters. All
cells that Excel considers to be text will be left aligned. In the following example, these
entries would be treated as text:
1025A63N; 123XYZ; 10-72; 123 456.
Numbers
Numbers include the numeric characters 0-9 and the following special characters:


, + - ( ) / E e $ % .
If a number is wider than the cell, ######## is displayed. To display the cell contents,
resize the column. Excel stores numbers up to 15 digits of accuracy. The largest positive
number is 9.99999999999999E307 and the smallest positive number is 1E-307. By
default, negative numbers are preceded by a minus sign. However, they can be formatted
to be enclosed in parenthesis or displayed in red. Entering a dollar sign ($) before a
number or a percent (%) symbol after changes the display of the number.
Dates and Times
Excel treats dates and times as numbers. They can be displayed in several built-in
formats. The way that a time or date is displayed on a worksheet depends on the number
format applied to the cell. When a date or time is entered into a cell, Excel automatically
changes the cells format from general to a built in date or time format. By default, dates
and times are right aligned in a cell. If Excel cannot recognize the date or time format, the
date or time is entered as text, which is left aligned in the cell. Date and time can be
mixed into one cell, however slashes and hyphens cannot be mixed in one entry. To type
a date and time in the same cell, separate the date and time with a space.

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ACS Computer Training
Excel Introduction

To type a time based on the 12-hour clock, type a space followed by AM or PM (or A or
P) after the time. Otherwise, Excel bases the time on the 24-hour clock. For example, if
you type 3:00 instead of 3:00 PM, the time is stored as 3:00 AM.
Times and dates can be added, subtracted, and used in other calculations. To use a date or
time in a formula, enter the date or time as text enclosed in quotation marks. For
example, the following formula would display a difference of 68:


="5/12/94"-"3/5/94"
Some examples of date and time formats:
Date/Time Entry
Format
6/9/01
m/d/y
9-June-01
dd-mmmm-yy
June-01
mmmm-yy
9-June
dd-mmmm
7:00 AM
h:mm AM/PM
7:00:00 AM
h:mm:ss AM/PM
18:00
h:mm
6/9/01 7:00
m/dd/yy h:mm
Formulas
A formula calculates a new value from existing values. An Excel formula can contain a
combination of constant values, cell references (cell addresses), range names, functions,
and/or operators. Formulas always begin with an equal sign (=). Here are a few
examples:
Constant
Values
=(456+57)*32
Cell
References
=D3/F13
Range
Names
=D3*Tax


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© 2002The University of Kansas

ACS Computer Training
Excel Introduction
Functions
Excel contains many predefined, or built-in, formulas, which are known as functions.
Functions can be used to perform simple or complex calculations. Some of the most
frequently used function are the SUM, AVERAGE, PMT, DLOOKUP, and IF functions.
Here is an example of the sum function adding cell addresses.
=SUM(D3:D7)
Operators
Operators specify the type of calculation that you want to perform on the
elements of a formula. Microsoft Excel includes four different types of
calculation operators: arithmetic, comparison, text, and reference.
Arithmetic
Operator
Meaning
*
Multiplication
/
Division
+
Addition
-
Subtraction
%
Percent
^
Caret
Comparison
Operator
Meaning
=
Equals
>
Greater than
<
Less than
>=
Greater than or equal to
<=
Less than or equal to
<>
Not equal to

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© 2002The University of Kansas

ACS Computer Training
Excel Introduction
Text
Operator
Meaning
&
Ampersand—Concatenates, or combines, two values
to produce one continuous text value.
Reference
Operator
Meaning
:
Colon—A range operator, which produces one
reference to all the cells between two references that
includes the two references. An example would be
D3:D7.
,
Comma—A union operator, which combines multiple
references into one reference. An example would be
SUM(D3:D7,F15,B4).
Creating Formulas
There are a couple of ways in which you can create formulas. You can type the formulas
directly into the cell or formula bar; you can use Excel’s built in Formula Palette; type a
formula directly into a cell; or use AutoSum to add a group or range of numbers.
Paste Function and the Formula Palette
The formula palette (which is under the Paste Function button
on the Standard
toolbar) can help you enter worksheet functions. As you enter a function into the
formula, the Formula Palette displays the name of the function, each of its arguments, a
description of the function and each argument, the current result of the function, and the
current result of the entire formula. To display the Formula Palette:
1. Click inside of the cell where you want your results of the formula to be.
2. Click on the Paste Function button
.
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© 2002The University of Kansas

Document Outline

  • Introduction
  • Objectives
  • Prerequisites
  • Related Training Available from ACS
  • Definitions
  • Creating and Opening Excel Workbooks
    • Opening Excel
    • With Excel Open
    • Opening An Existing Workbook
  • Inside an Excel Worksheet
    • Pointer Appearances
    • Selecting Parts of a Worksheet
      • Using the Mouse
      • Using the Keyboard
    • Cell Contents
      • Text
      • Numbers
      • Dates and Times
      • Formulas
        • Constant Values
          • Cell References
          • Range Names
        • Functions
          • Operators
            • Arithmetic
            • Comparison
            • Text
            • Reference
  • Creating Formulas
    • Paste Function and the Formula Palette
    • Typing the Formula Directly in a Cell
    • Using AutoSum
  • Editing & Deleting Formulas
  • Copying Formulas and Values
    • Autofill
      • Relative References
      • Absolute References
    • Copying Values
  • Changing the Workbook or Worksheet Appearance
    • Workbook Maintenance
      • Naming Worksheets
      • Adding Worksheets
      • Rearranging Worksheets
        • Moving a sheet within a workbook
        • Copying (or moving) a sheet to an existing workbook
        • Deleting Worksheets
    • Worksheet Maintenance
      • Adding or Deleting Cells
      • Adding or Deleting Rows and Columns
    • Formatting Worksheets
      • Formatting Toolbar and Dialog Box
      • AutoFormat
      • Clearing Formats
  • Getting Additional Help

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