INTRODUCTION TO MICROSOFT EXCEL
Once accountants want to sum up accounting data of a firm, they use an arrangement, which allows them to work on data presented in a format of rows and columns. Known as a worksheet this arrangement enables them to easily present the information in summary form and perform simple calculations. Highly interactive computer programs are available that allow you to present and work with DATA in an arrangement of rows and columns. Known as Spreadsheets, these programs started out as electronic versions of accounting worksheets with one major purpose - simple row and column arithmetic.
Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet that belongs to the category of computer programs described above. MS Excel runs under MS Windows and shares the common interface of other Windows particularly MS Office applications
Some of the important applications which spreadsheets are used for include:
· We can create financial models, which allow you to work out "what if" situations. In a spreadsheet changing variables within the model yield differing results. Data can be consolidated automatically to yield summaries at various levels.
· Excel provides many statistical, analytic and scientific functions, which allow you to analyze numerical data and present findings.
· Excel provides powerful and flexible presentation tools including charts and graphs.
· As a data management tool Excel provides an interface which allows easy entry, editing, sorting and filtering of data.
· Excel can access data in a wide variety of formats and is an ideal tool to analyze and manipulate data.
We can start Excel the same way you can start other windows programs from the Start menu on the windows taskbar.
1. Click the Start button on the Windows taskbar.
2. Point to Programs.
3. Select Microsoft Excel
MS Excel Environment
As is common with other windows applications Excel provides you with and environment or interface to do your work. When Excel starts what you see on the screen is a rectangular box or window with different parts to it. This is the MS Excel window. It consists of the application window and the workbook window.
the application window
The application window contains the menu bar, toolbars, status bar, and the workbook window. The bars allow you to navigate your way within Excel to perform various tasks
the workbook window
The workbook window opens within the application window when you start Excel, open an existing file, or create a new workbook.
The workbook window contains worksheets, tab scrolling buttons and scroll bars, which allow you to move quickly through a workbook and the Worksheet Area where you enter your data and perform your calculations.
Several windows may be open at the same time.
The Mouse Pointer usually appearing on the screen as an arrowhead is the mouse device used to select commands or actions to be executed. Within the Worksheet area it changes shape within the worksheet area appearing as a cross.
Workbooks and Worksheets
Workbooks are files that Excel uses to store data.
Worksheets which are the constructs within workbooks that Excel provides for you to present and work on data
The bars within the Excel screen/window allow you to access the various tools Excel provides to execute specific actions. It is essential to understand the use of these bars, as they will enable you to work smoothly Navigating within Excel via these bars is a simple task and you can do it easily using the mouse.