INTRODUCTION:  This lab session is designed to introduce you to the statistical aspects of Microsoft Excel.  During this session you will learn how to enter and exit Excel, how to enter data and commands, how to print information, and how to save your work for use in subsequent sessions.  As with any new skill, using this software will require practice and patience.  Excel is a spreadsheet used for organizing data in columns and rows.  It is an integrated part of Microsoft Office, and so data can be easily imported and exported into word processing documents, databases, graphics programs, etc.  It offers a wide range of statistical functions and graphs and so is a an alternative to specific statistical software. 



To start Excel:  Click on the Start button and choose Programs/Excel.  If you have the Office shortcut bar installed, simply click on the Excel icon.

To exit Excel:

To end a Excel session and exit the program, choose File from the menu bar and then choose Exit.  A dialog box will appear, asking if you want to save the changes made to this worksheet.  Click Yes or No.

You can also exit Excel by clicking the X in the upper right corner of the window.



The Document (sheet) Window:

 When you first start Excel you will be in a window titled “Microsoft Excel - Book 1” .  Excel organizes itself in workbooks, each of which is made up of worksheets that are 65,536 rows by 256 columns.  You can enter and edit data on several worksheets simultaneously and perform calculations based on data from multiple worksheets. When you create a chart, you can place the chart on the worksheet with its related data or on a separate chart sheet.  Each of the cells within the sheet is identified by the intersection of its row and column, for example A2, or B7.

Note the three tabs and the bottom of the screen, called “sheet1”,”sheet2”, and “sheet3”. The default is a workbook with three sheets, but the number of sheets in a workbook is limited only by available memory.  To add a single worksheet, click Worksheet on the Insert menu.  To delete sheets from a workbook, select the sheets you want to delete. Then on the Edit menu, click Delete Sheet.  To Rename a sheet, double-click the sheet tab, and type a new name over the current name.

The Application Window

When you first opened the workbook, there were three bars across the top of the screen.  The top one consists of nine drop down menu items and is called the Menu Bar.  It gives you access to all the Excel commands.  Two other toolbars are below the Menu Bar.  The first is the Standard Toolbar. This toolbar gives you easy access to the ordinary things you will be doing, such as saving, cut and paste, copying, spell check, and the Chart Wizard.  The Chart Wizard will be discussed in the next chapter, along with the graphical display of data.


Analysis ToolPak :  Microsoft Excel provides a set of data analysis tools — called the Analysis ToolPak — that you can use to save steps when you develop complex statistical or engineering analyses. You provide the data and parameters for each analysis; the tool uses the appropriate statistical or engineering macro functions and then displays the results in an output table. Some tools generate charts in addition to output tables.  If the Data Analysis command is not on the Tools menu, you need to install the Analysis ToolPak.  To do this, go to the Tools drop down menu and select Add-ins.  When the dialog box appears, check  Analysis Toolpak and Analysis VBA. Then click on OK


Below the Standard Toolbar is the Formatting Toolbar. This bar gives you easy access to the tools need to format your data in a suitable way.  This is where you will find bold, underlining and font choices, justifications, style, merging cells, etc.


You can choose additional toolbars by going to the Tools dropdown menu,  selecting Customize, and click next to any toolbar you wish to display.


The Help Window in Excel

Information about Excel is stored in the program.  If you forget how to use a command  or need general information, you can ask Excel for help.  From the Menu Bar choose Help .   A drop down menu will appear, giving you a choice between Microsoft Excel Help (F1 key) or the Office Assistant.  You can even customize the Office assistant to a varied selection of figures.   He will even travel with you from Excel into Word, or any other part of the Office package of programs.






When a workbook is first opened, the cell A1 is outlined in black.  This indicates the active cell.  Move your cursor around the sheet, clicking into different cells to activate them.  Note that the address changes in the box above A1.  The address (row and column) of the active cell always appears here.


Let's enter data in the second column:

78 94 93 81 75 62 58 50 80 79

To do this press the down arrow key (¯ ) or enter key to move to the next entry position.

Let’s fill the first column with the numbers 1 through 10.  We can do it the same way, or we can let Excel do it for us.  Enter a 1 in cell A1.  Choose Edit > Fill->Series.  In the dialog box, select columns, linear, step 1, stop value 10. Then  click OK.


Column 1 should now contain the integers 1 through 10.


While you are in the sheet window, fill columns 3 and 4 with a set of ten test scores each.  You should now have four columns of data. 


Changing a value entered

We can edit data directly in the cell or from the formula bar at the top of the sheet.  If you have not hit the Enter key yet, you can simply back space and correct your mistake.  If you have entered the data, click on the cell you wish to edit to make it active.  You can either retype to overwrite the data, or click into the formula bar and edit the entry.

Suppose we had inadvertently left out a value and we wish to enter it in a particular position.  Place the cursor in the cell in which you wish to insert the new value.  Click the Insert Cells button on the toolbar.  A dialog box will appear, asking which way you wish to move the cells.  A blank cell is created and the missing value can be entered.  Entire rows and columns can be added the same way.  You can take a short cut to this by using Control +.


A cell can be deleted by making the cell active, then  Choose: Edit > Delete Cells  or by using Control -



Copying Data

To copy the contents of one cell to another, simply activate the cell and choose Edit > Copy from the Menu Bar.  (Control C will also accomplish this.) Activate the cell that you want to paste the value into and choose Edit –>Paste (or Control V) This can also be done for a range of cells. Activate the upper left cell of the range. Press shift and click the lower right corner of the range.  This should highlight the entire range.  You can then copy and paste as above.


Cell References: 

Previously, you entered four columns of data.  Click on cell B11.  On the Standard Toolbar you will see a summation sign S. Click on it and the ten values above it will be enclosed in a box. Press enter and the sum of the ten values will be in cell B11 . Now activate cell B11, press Control C, highlight cells C11 and D11, and press Control V.  This should give you the sums of columns C and D. Note what happened in the formula when you copied it.  The references were changed to reflect the new column.  This is called a  relative reference.


If you need to preserve the value of a certain cell when copying a formula, you will have to use absolute referencing.  This is accomplished by placing $ within the address. (  A$6$ would keep the value in cell A6 wherever it was copied to within the worksheet.)





An Excel workbook contains  all your work; the data, graphs, and all the sheets within the workbook.  When you save a project, you save all of your work at once.  When you open a project, you can pick up right where you left off. 

The contents of each sheet can be saved and printed separately from the project, in a variety of formats.  You can also delete a worksheet or graph, which removes the item from the project.



You can open a wide variety of files with Excel.  Choose File Open to select the appropriate one.  There is an Import Wizard that will guide you through the process.


A CD ROM accompanies Johnson/Kuby’s Elementary Statistics, 9/e  This disk has data in Excel format for many of the problems in the text.  Follow the instructions that accompany the disk for use on your computer.




            You have many options when it comes to printing from Excel.  Go to the standard toolbar and choose the File drop down menu.  The Set Print Area choice allows you to select the range of cells you wish to print.

The Page SetUp dialog box has four tabs that will help you customize your output. You can also access this dialog box through Print Preview.  This is a good choice because it allows you to play with your selections to get the best layout for your output before you commit it to paper.