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Microsoft Excel -Class 1
First Look at Excel
This guide is designed to introduce you to using Microsoft Excel if you’re unfamiliar with any major aspect of it. The lessons in this guide will lead you through the fundamentals of creating and working with Excel spreadsheets.
Today's Excel spreadsheet isn't just for financial professionals. Microsoft Excel offers intuitive tools that make it easy to access, connect, and analyze critical data—regardless of your profession.
The first step in learning to use your new software is to start (or in computer parlance: launch) the Excel Program.
You launch Excel by:
1) SELECTING the Windows Start button; this will bring up a set of choices in a menu.
2) Drag your cursor over, Programs. Another menu will appear to the right.
3) Drag your cursor over to Microsoft Office, and another menu will appear on the right. 4) Drag your cursor over Microsoft Office 2003, and SELECT on it, you will launch Excel.
As each file made by Excel has the extention .xls. For example, in Book1.xls, we will describe files, as 'xls files'.
The initial xls window may not fill your whole screen. This size is very useful if you want to use more than one application simultaneously (such as a Web Browser), however, often, it is desirable to have a larger working window (also called working environment) in Microsoft Excel.
Components of Excel
When you first open Microsoft Excel, you’ll see the basic components; an Active cell, Column headings, a Formula bar, a Name box, the mouse pointer, Row headings, Sheet tabs, a Task Pane, Tab scrolling buttons and Toolbars. Listed below are descriptions of each component feature.
Navigate within worksheets
To navigate within a workbook, you use the arrow keys, PageUp, PageDown, or the Ctrl key in combination with the arrow keys to make larger movements. The most direct means of navigation is with your mouse. Scroll bars are provided and work as they do in all Windows applications. Go ahead and try moving between cells in your newly opened Excel document with your mouse and then the PageUp and PageDown keys.
Navigate between worksheets
To move to other Worksheets, you can Click their tab with the mouse at the bottom of the screen (Sheet1, Sheet 2, or Sheet 3) or use the Ctrl key with the Page Up and Page Down keys to move sequentially up or down through the worksheets. Go ahead and switch between your 3 sheets using the different methods described.
Insert, move, and rename worksheets
Worksheets are much like pages within a book; you peruse through them like you flip the pages of a book. There are several ways to move and copy worksheets. Right click on the sheet tab and choose Move or Copy. Select a new position in the workbook for the worksheet or click the Create a copy checkbox and Excel will paste a copy of that worksheet in the workbook. The same shortcut menu for the sheet tab also gives you the option to insert, delete or rename a worksheet.
Select and move worksheet cells
To select a large area of cells, select the first cell in the range, press and hold the Shift key, and then click the last cell in the range. Once you have selected a range of cells, you may move the cells within the worksheet by clicking and dragging the selection from its current location to its new one. To do this, bring your cursor to the side of the selection. When your cursor turns into 4 arrows pointing into opposite directions click and hold on to the mouse and drag where ever you want to locate it and let go of the mouse.
By pressing and holding the Ctrl key as you drag, Excel will leave the original selection in its place and paste a copy of the selection in the new location.
To move between workbooks, use the Alt key while dragging the selection.
Range selection techniques
Understanding text, values, and formulas
Information entered into cells is categorized as text, values or formulas. Values must be numbers, though they can be formatted to appear on the screen as currency or a percentage.
Editing cells and entering expressions
You can edit a cell by selecting the cell and then clicking in the formula bar or by double-clicking the cell to open the cell in edit mode.
Telephone numbers or social security numbers that contain other characters (like a dash or parentheses) are treated as text and cannot be used in calculations. Arithmetic operators are used in formulas.
Inserting worksheet rows and columns
The Insert dialog box
This figure depicts the Insert dialog box, which appears when you select a range of cells, right click on the selection and then choose Insert from the shortcut menu.
Selecting one of these options controls what happens to existing cells when the new row or column is inserted. Your formulas are still good, they adjust to the change.
Delete worksheet rows and columns
Deleting cells and ranges of cells
When you choose to delete a selection, a dialog box similar to the Insert dialog box pops up, except that the first two choices are to Shift cells left or Shift cells up.
Resize worksheet rows and columns
Functions & Formulas
Excel’s arithmetic operators
Formulas are expressions that are used to calculate a value.
When more than one arithmetic operator is present, the calculation must follow order-of-precedence rules, which determine which operator is applied first, second and so forth.
The chart below illustrates Excel’s order of precedence and shows sample expressions and the result of each expression.
Math and Statistical functions
This chart shows some commonly used math and statistical functions and a description of what they do.
Define functions, and functions within functions
The SUM function is a very commonly used math function in Excel. A basic formula example to add up a small number of cells is =A1+A2+A3+A4, but that method would be cumbersome if there were 100 cells to add up. Use Excel's SUM function to total the values in a range of cells like this: SUM(A1:A100).
You can also use functions within functions. Consider the expression =ROUND(AVERAGE(A1:A100),1). This expression would first compute the average of all the values from cell A1 through A100 and then round that result to 1 digit to the right of the decimal point
Atomic Mass Exercise
Open up Atm_mass.xls from the Class_Materials Excel folder on the Desktop. We will be working with this file throughout the training, so make sure you save this file on your Z drive for use later on. The file appears to be empty but the data is in columns Y and Z.
Move to cell Z1. Move by SELECTING the scroll bar on the bottom right (blue circled item). You will notice the column label on the top of the spreadsheet window (red circled item).
Inserting a Row and a Column
We would like to place a label on the top of the data that is now in Column A. We would also like to place the atomic number next to the atomic masses. If we add a column we can place the atomic numbers in the new Column A. If we add a row, we can place the labels in the Row 1.
You will notice that the values in A4:A94 increase by one as you go down from cell to cell. Look to the Editing line (to the right of the cell address and hand). Now arrow down through the cells. You will notice that the formula is changing. As you move to increasing row number, the row number in the formula increments up. This is the beauty of spreadsheets. A simple repetitive computation can be done in a snap.
Saving & Closing Excel
To Save the Excel document, SELECT the third icon from the left on the Toolbar (it is supposed to look like a floppy disk). If you prefer, SELECT File on the Menu Bar and then choose Save As from the menu. You will arrive at the same menu if you choose the Save icon, or go through the File menu. Now, choose the Save As commands. For this particular exercise, save the file as Atm_mass.xls on your Z drive so you can have access to the saved file at another time.
There are two common methods to close a file. In the course of closing the program, any file you have open will be closed. Or you can close a file without closing the program. These two actions are represented by the two X's in the upper right corner. The X in the very top right (in the Title Bar) will close the program, Microsoft Excel. If you have not saved the file since you have made any changes, it will ask you if you wish to save the file. The other X (in the Menu Bar or the File Title Bar) will close the file, but not the program. It will prompt you to save the file you have been working on.
Microsoft Excel 2002 Tutorials
Joseph F. Lomax, Chemistry Department, USNA.
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