Microsoft Office Playlist Lessons: Microsoft Excel

Lesson 3: Microsoft Excel


Excel is a spreadsheet program that allows you to storeorganize, and analyze information.

Go deeper in our Getting Started with Excel lesson.


Excel files are called workbooks. Whenever you start a new project in Excel, you'll need to create a new workbook.

Go deeper in our Create and Open Workbooks lesson.


Whenever you create a new workbook in Excel, you'll need to know how to save it in order to access and edit it later.

Go deeper in our Saving and Sharing Workbooks lesson.


Whenever you work with Excel, you'll enter information—or content—into cells. Cells are the basic building blocks of a worksheet.

Go deeper in our Cell Basics lesson.


By default, every row and column of a new workbook is set to the same height and width. Excel allows you to modify column width and row height in different ways, including wrapping text and merging cells.

Go deeper in our Columns, Rows, and Cells lesson.


Merging can be useful for organizing your data, but it can also create problems later on.


Basic formatting can customize the look and feel of your workbook, allowing you to draw attention to specific sections and making your content easier to view and understand.

Go deeper in our Formatting Cells lesson.


If you want to copy formatting from one cell to another, you can use the Format Painter command on the Home tab.


Whenever you're working with a spreadsheet, it's a good idea to use appropriate number formats for your data.

Go deeper in our Understanding Number Formats lesson.


If you want to add the current date to a cell, you can use the Ctrl+; shortcut.


Every workbook contains at least one worksheet by default. When working with a large amount of data, you can create multiple worksheets to help organize your workbook and make it easier to find content.

Go deeper in our Multiple Worksheets lesson.


If you want to view a different worksheet, you can simply click the tab to switch to that worksheet. However, with larger workbooks this can sometimes become tedious, as it may require scrolling through all of the tabs to find the one you want. Instead, you can simply right-click the scroll arrows in the lower-left corner.


When working with a lot of data in Excel, it can be difficult and time consuming to locate specific information. You can easily search your workbook using the Find feature, which also allows you to modify content using the Replace feature.

Go deeper in our Find & Replace lesson.


There may be times when you want to print a workbook to view and share your data offline. Once you've chosen your page layout settings, it's easy to preview and print a workbook from Excel using the Print pane.

Go deeper in our Page Layout and Printing lesson.


One of the most powerful features in Excel is the ability to calculate numerical information using formulas.

Go deeper in our Intro to Formulas lesson.


You may have experience working with formulas that contain only one operator, like 7+9. More complex formulas can contain several mathematical operators, like 5+2*8.

Go deeper in our Complex Formulas lesson.


There are two types of cell references: relative and absolute.

Go deeper in our Cell References lesson.


When writing a formula, you can press the F4 key on your keyboard to switch between relative and absolute cell references.


function is a predefined formula that performs calculations using specific values in a particular order.

Go deeper in our Functions lesson.


The AutoSum command allows you to automatically insert the most common functions into your formula, including SUM, AVERAGE, COUNT, MAX, and MIN.


Excel includes several tools that make it easier to view content from different parts of your workbook at the same time, including the ability to freeze panes and split your worksheet.

Go deeper in our Freeze Panes and View Options lesson.


As you add more content to a worksheet, organizing this information becomes especially important. You can quickly reorganize a worksheet by sorting your data.

Go deeper in our Sorting Data lesson.


If your worksheet contains a lot of content, it can be difficult to find information quickly. Filters can be used to narrow down the data in your worksheet, allowing you to view only the information you need.

Go deeper in our Filtering Data lesson.


Worksheets with a lot of content can sometimes feel overwhelming and can even become difficult to read. Fortunately, Excel can organize data into groups, allowing you to easily show and hide different sections of your worksheet.

Go deeper in our Groups and Subtotals lesson.


Once you've entered information into your worksheet, you may want to format your data as a table.

Go deeper in our Tables lesson.


It can be difficult to interpret Excel workbooks that contain a lot of data. Charts allow you to illustrate your workbook data graphically, which makes it easy to visualize comparisons and trends.

Go deeper in our Charts lesson.


Use tables to keep charts up to date.


Similar to charts and sparklines, conditional formatting provides a way to visualize data and make worksheets easier to understand.

Go deeper in our Conditional Formatting lesson.


Excel offers two powerful features that allow you to work with others on the same spreadsheet: comments and co-authoring.

Go deeper in our Comments and Co-authoring lesson.


Excel includes several tools to help finalize and protect your workbook, including the Document Inspector and Protect Workbook feature.

Go deeper in our Inspect and Protect Workbooks lesson.


When you have a lot of data, it can sometimes be difficult to analyze all of the information in your worksheet. PivotTables can help make your worksheets more manageable by summarizing data and allowing you to manipulate it in different ways.

Go deeper in our Intro to PivotTables lesson.


PivotTables can be used to summarize and analyze almost any type of data. To manipulate your PivotTable—and gain even more insight into your data—Excel offers three additional tools: filtersslicers, and PivotCharts.

Go deeper in our Do More with PivotTables lesson.


Excel includes powerful tools to perform complex mathematical calculations, including what-if analysis.

Go deeper in our What-if Analysis lesson.