Getting Started With Excel

 Self-Paced Overview

Entering and Editing Data

Entering Data

As previously pointed out, data is entered by selecting a cell and entering the data. In the illustration below, if you wanted to enter the year column (column A) you would click on cell A2, type 2011 and press [ENTER]. Entering the data would automatically advance the active cell to the next row or cell A3.

The reason A2 in the illustration below was chosen as the first cell to start entering the year labels is to allow a row (row 1) to be used for headings of each of the columns. Subsequently, columns B, C, D, etc., were entered. This was done by first entering the column heading, e.g., Net Income, and then the values 80000, 78900, 67800, etc. Note the values entered were "plain" numbers such as 80000 instead of the formatted number $80,000.00. It is important to enter the number as a plain number and format the cell to the required specification. We will do this later.

Microsoft Excel

Editing Data

Once you have entered data into a cell, that data can be edited by first clicking on the cell to make the cell active and then clicking on the formula bar above the worksheet. This allows you to insert or delete characters in that cell. An alternate method of editing the contents of a cell is to click on the cell to make it the active cell and then press the [F2] function key at the top of the keyboard. You can delete the contents of a cell by clicking on the cell and pressing [Delete] on the keyboard.

Inserting Columns, Rows, and Cells

Microsoft Excel
Microsoft Excel

To insert a column, click anywhere in a column you wish the new column to appear ahead of or to the left of, and then on the Home tab, in the Cells group, on the Ribbon at the top of the Excel screen, click the arrow by Insert, and then click Insert Sheet Columns. Selecting an existing row to insert a new row ahead of or above is done the same way.

When you click the arrow on the Insert button, you will notice the options to Insert Cells, Insert Sheet Rows, Insert Sheet Columns, or Insert Sheet. When requesting a new cell, Excel asks if you wish to move the existing cells to the right or down. is maintained by Dr. Sharon Garrison
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