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MS Excel 2010
A Jargon Free Guide
Paul Barnett 8/3/2010

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A quick guide to some features in MS Excel 2010 and an insight into Jargon Free Training

Contents
Overview ................................................................................................. 2 What is MS Excel? .................................................................................... 2 Load MS Excel ........................................................................................ 3 Entering data ......................................................................................... 5 Some new features in MS Excel 2010 ............................................................ 12 So what can Jargon Free Training do for you? .................................................... 14

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Overview
What is MS Excel?
MS Excel is a spreadsheet program and is used to analyze and perform operations on numerical data. It is part of the MS Office software suite. Spreadsheets can be kept simple such as keeping track of your monthly outgoings or can get quite complex if forecasting or quantitative analysis methods are used. Data is entered in a grid made of rows, columns and cells. You may also present data in a graph format. Here is how a typical spreadsheet with a graph may look. Column

Row Cell

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Load MS Excel
Once MS Excel is loaded, you will be presented with a blank grid. This is known as a worksheet. A worksheet is part of a workbook. Many worksheets can make up a workbook.

At the very top you will see what’s known as the ribbon, containing all the MS Excel commands.

At the bottom left of the screen you will see it defaulted to sheet 1. You also have sheet 2 and 3 available. All of these sheets, or worksheets as they are known, form part of this workbook.

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If you click on the file tab at the far left it will take you what is known as the backstage view. Then click on the ‘New’ option.

At this point you can create a new workbook by double clicking the option ‘Blank workbook’ or select from a range of pre-built templates.

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Entering data
Position your cursor in column A, row 5. The cell will now have a highlighted border.

Type in the word ‘Company’.

This column row position can also be referred to as A5. Press the tab key to move to the next cell and type in the following:

You may have to widen your columns to fit the text. Hover the mouse over the edge of the column header until you see a cross symbol. Now hold down your mouse button and drag the edge until you are happy the text fits in the column.

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Now flesh it out a little more and add the following:

What we have here are the product sales for a company. So far we have:

Row 5, Column A (value= Company) Row 6, Column A (value= A) Row 7, Column A (value= B) Row 8, Column A (value= C) Row 9, Column A (value= D) Row 5, Column B (value= Product) Row 6, Column B (value= CD) Row 7, Column B (value= DVD) Row 8, Column B (value= Tape) Row 9, Column B (value= Video)
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Row 5, Column C (value= Sales) Row 6, Column C (value= 2565.44) Row 7, Column C (value= 1112.43) Row 8, Column C (value= 324.88) Row 9, Column C (value= 215.67) Row 5, Column D (value= Final Total) Row 6, Column D (value= ) Row 7, Column D (value= ) Row 8, Column D (value= ) Row 9, Column D (value= )

So far so good! We now need to calculate the total and enter it into the ‘Final Total’ column. We are going to base our final total on a tax value added to the sales figures. In cell A3 type the words ‘Tax Value’ (without the quotes). In cell B3 type in 17.5 You should now have the following:

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Click in cell B3 Click on the name box which is just above column A.

Type the words ‘Tax’ (without the quotes).

We can now refer to the 17.5 value by using the word ‘Tax’. So let’s go right ahead and apply the tax rate to our sales total. Click in cell D6.
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Type the following: =C6+(Tax*C6/100) Now press the tab key on your keyboard. All we are saying is take the value in cell C6 and then add to it the tax rate multiplied by cell C6 divided by 100.

You should now have a value in the final total column:

We need to do the same calculation for the other rows. Forget about dusting off your calculator hidden somewhere in the back of a drawer. No, there is a much easier way in MS Excel.

Click on the value in cell D6. You will see a highlighted border around the cell. Hover your mouse to the bottom right of the cell until the large cross symbol turns into a smaller, thinner cross handle. Hold down your left mouse button and drag the handle down to cell D9.

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You should now have the following:

See how easy it was to apply the formula to the other cells.

We could even add a quick graph. Click in the company cell which is A5. Hover your mouse to the bottom right of the cell until the large cross symbol turns into a smaller, thinner cross handle. Hold down your left mouse button and drag the handle all the way over to cell D9. Now release the mouse button.

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At the ribbon, click on the insert tab.

In the charts section, click the button with the pie chart. Select the first 2-D pie chart option.

And voila – MS Excel inserts a pie chart showing our sales data.

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I have covered a very simple example of how a spreadsheet is created. Spreadsheets can be simple or as complex as you make them. Excel comes with a vast array of mathematical functions and formula that you can apply to your data. Whether you use MS Excel for your business, home or just learning purposes, you will soon discover that MS Excel is a valuable tool to have.

Some new features in MS Excel 2010
MS Excel 2010 introduces sparklines.

Sparklines are tiny charts that sit in a cell. You may want to show increases or decreases in sales and sparkline charts can highlight the pattern of your data. Another new feature in Excel 2010 is the ability to protect your workbook. If you want to share a workbook with others via email or the network, you can choose which part of the workbook can be edited.

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Head over to the section called changes and you will be able to set ranges that can be edited or set the entire workbook as view only.

The Backstage view is available in all the new MS Offce 2010 applications and that includes Excel. Excel now has a slicer tool. Essentially this lets you filter and display data and create dashboards that track data visually. There are some new tools for document sharing with others. You can have many people working on the document at the same time. PowerPivot – this is a download that handles massive amounts of data. Now worksheets containing millions of rows are no longer an issue. You will find conditional formatting has improved in Excel 2010. This allows you to apply formatting to a range of cells and change the formatting according to the cell value.

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So what can Jargon Free Training do for you?
 Do you want to increase your productivity?  Do you want to improve your career prospects?  Are you tired of hunting for answers? Well now is the time to take action. Cut the jargon! Get on board Jargon Free Training. Learn fast, learn smart! Take the first steps to success.

Image: Filomena Scalise / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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