Excel Basics

The Excel Screen

Choose the number for a description of the component's function.
To return to this diagram, click on the back button of your browser's toolbar, or the animated graphic

To add/remove/rename a sheet, point to any of the visible sheet tabs (11 above)
right mouse button click, then choose your desired option.


The Title bar displays the name of the software package: Microsoft Excel. 

It also displays the name of the current document: Bookl. (No specific name is given at this point.) You can begin typing immediately. Excel will prompt you to name and save the document before you exit.

The Menu bar allows the user access to functions that are not readily available on the toolbars. 

The Standard toolbar is accessible only with the mouse. By default, the Standard toolbar is on. With the Standard toolbar, you can access certain functions more quickly. 

click here for descriptions of the toolbar buttons 

The Formatting toolbar is accessible only with the mouse. With the Formatting toolbar, you can quickly access the most commonly used text layout and formatting features. 

The Column Labels.  As Excel is based in Math, each column is labeled for identification.   The active column head is bolded for easy visual references.

Select All button.  When you choose this button, located just to the left of column A, the entire worksheet (256 columns, 65,536 rows) will become selected. 

The Insertion point can be identified as a dark square around a cell. It indicates the location where you enter characters, or where you make changes to a document.  Once you begin typing the cursor will reappear within the cell.
Row markers.  

Row dividers.  Used to readjust the height of each row.


Sheet navigation buttons  These buttons are designed to navigate large worksheets where the there are more sheets than the lower part of the program can show.
Sheet Tabs  Excel allows the user to create as many sheets as necessary.  They are shown at the bottom of your screen.  The active sheet is the one that is shown in white.  To rename the sheet, double click on the appropriate one.
Horizontal Scroll bar  When you work sheet is wider then you visible area, this scroll bar is used to move left or right on the page.

Active keyboard components There are three active keyboard keys, the caps lock, num lock and scroll lock keys.  When any has been activated, this area of the program will indicate so.
Vertical Scroll bar
As we mentioned, spreadsheets can be up to 65,500+ rows  (OK, stop laughing) and your screen can only comfortably show you anywhere from 20-35 rows.  The vertical scroll bar has two uses.  The first is a method of navigating up and down on your sheet.  
The second is an indicator as to how long your workspace is.  The smaller the inner bar is in length, the more information is on the page.
Column Separators are used to size columns.  Notice when you move your mouse over the area, the shape changes into a sizing arrow.  

Hold down the left mouse button and drag in the direction (left or right) you want to size the column.  If you double click while the mouse is in the size shape, the column (in the example B) will adjust to the necessary width depending on what information you have inserted in the column.

Remember to keep the mouse in line with the column section of the screen.  If you move the mouse down to the body of work and release the left mouse button, the action will be cancelled and you will have to start again.

Minimize/Restore/Exit buttons, located at the right side of the title bar. Notice there are two sets of buttons.  The upper set is for the Program level commands.   The lower set is for the file level.
The Formula bar shows what is actually in a cell.  When formulas are entered into a spreadsheet, the result is shown in the cell, not the formula.  
The Name Field shows you the name of the cell you are sitting on.  If you have named areas in your workbook or spreadsheet, the name will be listed in this box.  When you chose, or type a name in this field, you will be immediately taken to that location.






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