Structuring and Entering Worksheet Data

Creating a worksheet is a little like using numbers to tell a story. For example, notice in Figure 3, that my worksheet has a title. This is the introduction to my worksheet. This simple structure communicates the purpose of the worksheet and includes the date it was created. Now others will understand what my worksheet is all about. For practice, try creating the worksheet depicted in Figure 3.

To enter data into your worksheet, simply click your mouse in the cell where you want to begin typing. If you type a number or letter into a cell, and then change your mind, click on the Cancel (x) button depicted in the figure below. Click on the Accept (checkmark) or Enter key to confirm your entry.

Figure 3

I could use a calculator to add the contents of the January data; however, manually calculating this way would really defeat the purpose of Excel. A key advantage of using Excel is that it can quickly and accurately calculate as well as allow us to perform what is referred to as what-if analysis. For example, if we construct a formula to calculate the contents of the cells B5 through B13, (in Excel terms: B5:B13) we can go back and change the numbers in any cell within that range to see how it effects our total. That is an example of what-if analysis.

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