Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member

Exploring the Expression Builder interface

From: Access 2010: Queries in Depth

Video: Exploring the Expression Builder interface

In the last movie, we saw that the Query Design Wizard used a function to calculate the count to the number of records within our query. You can see that here. I currently got the qry_ OrderHistory query open in Design view. In the very end here, I got the Count function. Let me right click in this field and I'll say Zoom to open it up in the Zoom box. So the way that Access's wizard created this counting field is it used a function called Count. Now functions are always written with the same formatting.

Exploring the Expression Builder interface

In the last movie, we saw that the Query Design Wizard used a function to calculate the count to the number of records within our query. You can see that here. I currently got the qry_ OrderHistory query open in Design view. In the very end here, I got the Count function. Let me right click in this field and I'll say Zoom to open it up in the Zoom box. So the way that Access's wizard created this counting field is it used a function called Count. Now functions are always written with the same formatting.

You have the name of the function and then in parentheses wrap whatever you want to apply that function to. So we had a count function that's counting everything with the asterisk wildcard. We also see that Access's wizard provided us with an alias. Count Of tbl_Products:. So let's take a look at how we can apply functions to our database. We'll go ahead and say OK to close the Zoom box. Let's go ahead and close this query. We don't need to save it. I'll create a new query in Design view. We'll add a couple of tables here.

We'll add the Direct Customer table and the Orders table and close Show window. We'll add FirstName and LastName to our query and then in the third field a we re going to use a function to count up the number of transactions. Let's right-click and go the Build. This will open up the Expression Builder. Now the Expression Builder window has a couple of functions. First, the top pane allows you to write in SQL syntax or functions that will then populate into this field.

They'll populate down here. Then there is three windows on the bottom. The bottom window on the left gives you a list of all of the objects within our database. So it's just the Two Trees.accdb file. If I expand that open, I have access to everything within my tables, queries, forms, and reports. We also have a list of functions and we have our built-in functions. These are the functions that are built into Access. If we've written custom functions, those would appear into the Two Trees folder and if we are connected to a SharePoint site, we might see some things under Web Services. But for now, let's just take a look at the function that are built-in with Access.

We'll click on Built-In Functions and the second two panes populate. Let me go ahead and expand this window a little bit so we have more room. Middle window shows us the categories that the expressions fall into. We have Arrays, Conversion, Database, Date/Time, etcetera. Towards the bottom, we can see a category called SQL Aggregate. If we click on that, the third window populates with all of the functions within that category. And these are the ones we saw before in the drop-down menu. Average, Count, Max, Min, Standard Deviation, Sum, and Variants.

So let's go ahead and use the Count function to count the number of records in our database. We'll double-click on Count to add the expression to our Build window. We could see that Access helps us out with some of the syntax that says we are going to apply the Count function and we need to supply an expression that we want to count up. So it's saying Count. Well, what are we going to count? If we click in there, we can provide that value. Click on the expression and the whole section will highlight and then we'll drill into our tables to find the piece of what we want to count. We go into Orders table and let's count up the Customer IDs that appears in the Orders table.

We'll go ahead and say OK and run our query. Now Access is going to tell us that we try to execute a query that does not include the specified expression FirstName as part of an aggregate function. And that's really just a complicated way of saying that Access doesn't know how we are grouping things together. We need to first to activate our Totals column anytime we are using a function. Let's go ahead and say OK. It will turn on our Totals column. If we try and run it again, we'll get a second message. Access cannot have an Aggregate Function in a GROUP BY clause.

You need to change this GROUP BY to Expression so that Access knows that we want to calculate those value in a group based on those values. We'll go ahead and say OK and change our GROUP BY to Expression. Now if we try to run it, we'll get the calculated results. Let's go ahead and sort our expression, the Count column, and we'll sort this Largest to Smallest, and we'll see the Tobias Rivera has had the most number of transactions with our company. He's had 9 total orders.

As you get more experience writing out the expressions that you want to use, you might find it quicker to just write them out by hand directly in the grid. But for learning the proper syntax, troubleshooting, or for discovering how new functions work, the Expression Builder is a fantastic tool.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Access 2010: Queries in Depth
Access 2010: Queries in Depth

46 video lessons · 13630 viewers

Adam Wilbert
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 9m 9s
    1. Welcome
      1m 10s
    2. Using the exercise files
      41s
    3. Introducing the database
      4m 29s
    4. Previewing the course
      2m 49s
  2. 17m 17s
    1. Understanding queries
      3m 31s
    2. Following naming conventions and best practices
      2m 56s
    3. Using the Query Wizard
      5m 21s
    4. Exploring the design interface
      5m 29s
  3. 26m 39s
    1. Defining criteria
      5m 40s
    2. Understanding comparison operators
      3m 19s
    3. Defining the column headers
      2m 49s
    4. Exploring the property sheet
      7m 32s
    5. Printing query results
      2m 41s
    6. Working with joins
      4m 38s
  4. 14m 14s
    1. Understanding parameter queries
      4m 27s
    2. Obtaining parameters from forms
      5m 17s
    3. Creating a combo box
      4m 30s
  5. 23m 24s
    1. Understanding the Totals field
      5m 31s
    2. Creating aggregate calculations
      3m 31s
    3. Exploring the Expression Builder interface
      4m 28s
    4. Using mathematical operators
      5m 46s
    5. Applying text functions
      4m 8s
  6. 24m 23s
    1. Understanding dates as serial numbers
      2m 42s
    2. Specifying a range of dates or times
      3m 47s
    3. Formatting dates
      4m 31s
    4. Using other Date/Time functions
      3m 47s
    5. Defining today's date
      2m 41s
    6. Calculating time intervals
      6m 55s
  7. 20m 9s
    1. Introducing the conditional IIf function
      2m 57s
    2. Creating an IIf function
      7m 31s
    3. Nesting IIf functions
      4m 57s
    4. Using the Switch function
      4m 44s
  8. 20m 41s
    1. Understanding the reporting tool
      2m 13s
    2. Building the form
      6m 57s
    3. Building the query
      5m 4s
    4. Building the report
      3m 30s
    5. Finalizing the reporting tool
      2m 57s
  9. 25m 37s
    1. Finding duplicate records
      2m 17s
    2. Identifying unmatched records
      2m 29s
    3. Creating crosstab results
      2m 57s
    4. Creating backups
      1m 29s
    5. Creating update queries
      3m 22s
    6. Making, deleting, and appending records
      5m 36s
    7. Uniting tables
      3m 16s
    8. Embedding SQL code in queries
      4m 11s
  10. 1m 0s
    1. Next Steps
      1m 0s

Start learning today

Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.

Become a member
Sometimes @lynda teaches me how to use a program and sometimes Lynda.com changes my life forever. @JosefShutter
@lynda lynda.com is an absolute life saver when it comes to learning todays software. Definitely recommend it! #higherlearning @Michael_Caraway
@lynda The best thing online! Your database of courses is great! To the mark and very helpful. Thanks! @ru22more
Got to create something yesterday I never thought I could do. #thanks @lynda @Ngventurella
I really do love @lynda as a learning platform. Never stop learning and developing, it’s probably our greatest gift as a species! @soundslikedavid
@lynda just subscribed to lynda.com all I can say its brilliant join now trust me @ButchSamurai
@lynda is an awesome resource. The membership is priceless if you take advantage of it. @diabetic_techie
One of the best decision I made this year. Buy a 1yr subscription to @lynda @cybercaptive
guys lynda.com (@lynda) is the best. So far I’ve learned Java, principles of OO programming, and now learning about MS project @lucasmitchell
Signed back up to @lynda dot com. I’ve missed it!! Proper geeking out right now! #timetolearn #geek @JayGodbold
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now "Already a member? Log in

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Access 2010: Queries in Depth.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Your file was successfully uploaded.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.