How to Use Excel - Excel Tutorials for Beginners

A Beginner's Guide to Excel

Screen Elements - Parts of the Excel Screen
Screen Elements - Parts of the Excel Screen. © Ted French

How to Use Excel is a series of tutorials designed with the absolute beginner in mind. The instructions include step by step examples on how how to use Excel to create a basic spreadsheet.

Excel Screen Elements

This tutorial identifies the main elements of an Excel worksheet. There are links from each label to glossary items describing each part in greater detail.

Basic Excel Spreadsheet Tutorial

The tutorial covers the basics of creating a spreadsheet in the latest versions of Excel.

Topics covered include:

  • entering data;
  • creating simple formulas;
  • defining a named range;
  • copying formulas with the fill handle;
  • applying number and cell formatting to the worksheet.

Excel Math

How to add, subtract, multiply, or divide numbers in Excel.

Each tutorial includes a step by step example on how to create a formula that will carry out one or more of the four basic math operations in Excel.

Adding Up Numbers with the SUM Function

Step by step instructions on using Excel's SUM function. Since adding rows and columns of numbers is one of the most common operations in Excel, Microsoft has included this formula shortcut to make the job easier. 

Move or Copy Data

Move data to a new location or duplicate it using cut, copy and paste.

Add / Remove Columns and Rows

Need to adjust the layout of your data? Rather than move the data, quickly add or remove columns and rows to expand or shrink the work area as needed.

Hide / Unhide Columns and Rows

Quickly hide columns and rows containing data that can't be removed, Doing so can make it easier to focus on other, important areas of the worksheet. And it's easy to bring them back once you need to see the hidden data again.

Entering the Date

Use a keyboard shortcut to quickly enter the current date.

Or, if you would prefer to have the date update to the current date every time the worksheet is opened, use the TODAY function instead.

Entering Data in Excel

Seven tips on best practices for entering data into a worksheet Including:

  • planning the worksheet;
  • laying out the data;
  • entering headings and data units;
  • protecting worksheet formulas.

Excel Chart Tutorials

How to Create and Format a:

Also known as bar graphs, column charts are used to show comparisons between items of data. Each column in the chart represents a different data value from the worksheet.

Line graphs or line charts, are used to show trends over time. Each line in the graph shows the changes in the value for one data value from the worksheet.

Pie charts are used to show percentages. A single data series is plotted and each slice of the pie represents a single data value from the worksheet.