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Whether you're a novice or an expert wanting to refresh your skillset with Microsoft Excel, this course covers all the basics you need to start entering your data and building organized workbooks. Author Dennis Taylor teaches you how to enter and organize data, perform calculations with simple functions, work with multiple worksheets, format the appearance of your data, and build charts and PivotTables. Other lessons cover the powerful IF, VLOOKUP, and COUNTIF family of functions; the Goal Seek, Solver, and other data analysis tools; and how to automate many of these tasks with macros.
If you need to enter months, days of the week, dates or certain number series, Excel has a great feature called Auto Fill, which is really handy and we're about to use it here. We need to put in the first six months in row 1 here, starting with January. Now, the Auto Fill feature is based on the idea that in the lower right-hand corner of the active cell is a special button and it's called the Fill Handle. Notice, when I slide the mouse over the lower right-hand corner, the mouse pointer becomes a thin plus, sometimes called crosshairs.
If I hold down the Left Mouse button, now and start to drag to the right, notice the pop-up below that says, February, March, April, May, et cetera, I'm going to keep dragging this right up to here. Let go of the mouse and we put in the other months. We'll worry about the alignment a bit lighter. That's really handy. Same thing would have happened here. Now, we're not really going to be using this in column A, but I'm going to click over here in column A and do the same thing. Drag from the lower right-hand corner. If this were a situation in a different kind of worksheet where we were doing this for 12 months, you could drag all the way to the end.
If you dragged a bit too far, it would just start all over again. Now, we don't really need those, so I'll press Delete and they're gone. Now, alternately and working in the same way, if we start with abbreviations-- now, you can start with any month actually-- typically, you would start with January or "J-a-n". We can drag across here using the Fill Handle and I dragged a bit farther this way, so it went into July. Anytime you drag rightward or downward using this feature, you move ahead chronologically. Now, occasionally but rarely, you might drag upward if I take "J-u-l" from the Fill Handle in the lower right-hand corner and drag upward, we get June.
If we were to drag leftward here, we get May and so on. It's a bit unusual to drag in those two directions, but you can do that too. Now I don't need this data here, so I'm going to select it all, starting from any of the corners of this location-- click and drag across and down--highlight the data and press Delete. Now, although we don't need the entries in this worksheet, I want to also alert you to the fact that if you're using days of the week--and you might start with Monday or Sunday, doesn't make any difference--here too you can use full spellings or abbreviations, this way.
In both cases too, if you are using abbreviations, they must be three letters, so although you probably wouldn't start with Tuesday, if you did, use "T-u-e-s" and drag from the corner. It's not going to work, because you'll get the same entries all over again. It's gotta be three letters if you want these to change--if you're using abbreviations--so three letters or full spellings. In addition to these kinds of entries too, if you enter dates, for example, if you type 2/3/13, date entries when copied from the lower right-hand corner, automatically, give you the next day and the next day.
This Auto Fill capability is available in a variety of situations and many, many times it has to do with dates or days of the week or months as we saw earlier. And also handy at times, although not in this worksheet, if you wanted to create a series say, 5, 10, 15 or 1, 2, 3--something like that--you can create two entries. Here's a 5, here's a 10, and then we click and drag across both of them together and then drag from the corner, so we drag downward a few cells here; we'll get the series this way too.
If we had dragged upward--if we had room--we get 0 and then -5 and so on. Now, I can erase these or I can use another feature, which we'll talk about in another movie called "Undo". I don't want this data here, so I'll press Ctrl+Z, or in the upper left-hand corner use the Undo button. So "undo", and we'll just undo some of these entries here; and a few more undos too. Creating monthly entries, like we see here, either with abbreviations, starting with "J-a-n" or with full spellings, we can easily make these entries with Excel's Auto Fill feature.
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