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In Excel for Mac 2011 Essential Training, author Curt Frye gives a comprehensive overview of Excel, the full-featured spreadsheet software from Microsoft. The course covers key skills such as manipulating workbook and cell data, using functions, automating actions, printing worksheets, and collaborating with others. Exercise files accompany the course.
Even the best writers and analysts occasionally misspell a word, which can make it difficult to interpret the author's intent. Excel has a built-in spelling checker you can use to correct mistakes and to identify words or terms that are spelled correctly but don't appear in Excel's dictionary. So here I have a worksheet, and there are a number of intentional misspellings for California and Oregon. If you want to check spelling in a worksheet, you just display the worksheet and then on the Review tab of the Ribbon, click Spelling. When you do, it scans through your document and it finds the first cell that it believes contains a misspelling.
So, for example, in this case we have Califonia, which Excel identifies here as being not in the dictionary, and then it makes a suggestion for what you can change it to. In this case, the default suggestion, California, is correct. So if I wanted to accept it, I can click Change. After that, Excel moves on to the next misspelling, which is here, in cell A3. It gives you a series of suggestions. If there were more data in this worksheet, and I thought that perhaps this misspelling might have happened a number of times, then instead of saying Change, I could click Change All.
When I do, Excel changes all of the other misspellings of that type in the document. Now, the final misspelling is hidden behind the Spelling dialog, so I'll move that to the side, so you can see it. So here we have a name, and the last name is Diagona, and in this case it is actually someone's last name, but it's not in the dictionary, and Excel suggests changing it to the word Diagonal. However, because it is a name, what I want to do is add it to my dictionary, so it won't be flagged again. To add a word to your dictionary, you can click the Add button, while the alleged misspelling is highlighted in the Spelling dialog. Click Add, and Excel adds that term to your dictionary.
It says the spelling check is complete for the entire sheet. So I will click OK. Now, if I were to check the spelling in the worksheet, because I added this term here to the dictionary, it no longer comes up as a misspelling, and Excel doesn't find any errors. Now, I'm going to put one of the errors back, so we can check the spelling again and see the Spelling dialog box. So again, it's on the Review tab. Click Spelling.
Let's say that I have a word that is not a misspelling, but that for whatever reason I don't want to add to the dictionary. In other words, assume for a moment that the word Califonia was in fact a correct usage, in other words perhaps it was an intentional misspelling, like it is in this case, but I don't want to add it to my dictionary, so that in the future Excel would still flag it if it sees it again as being a possible error. If you want Excel to skip a word without adding it to your dictionary, you can click Ignore. When you do, Excel checks the rest of the worksheet.
If it doesn't find any misspellings, it displays this message box, and you can click OK. I'm going to click Spelling again. You can see that I ignored it once, but the next time it checks the spelling, it flags it again as a potential misspelling. If you're checking your spelling, and you're partway through your sheet and you want to get out of the Spelling dialog - in other words, you wanted to stop checking the spelling - you can just click Cancel, and the dialog box disappears. Checking spelling helps ensure your worksheet data is easy to understand, but Excel worksheets often contain terms that, while they are correct, will appear as misspellings to the spelling checker.
If that's the case, you can add those terms to your dictionary so they won't be flagged in the future.
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