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  1. #1
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    Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    So, i've been handed the task of training various people on the use of Excel... and as much as I've racked my brain, I can't seem to make some variations.

    There will be two classes, one for the absolute Excel Beginner, (This is a Cell, This is a Row,) and another for Advanced Features.

    So what do you all think? What should fall under beginner, and what should fall under advanced? Does anyone have some good web-resources for existing tutorials?

    Thanks in Advance for all your help!
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  2. #2
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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    Put all macros in the Advanced class. Probably graphing and MS Query as well. And include the complex worksheet functions again, like future value, etc. Cover building forms, hiding sheets, protection, etc.

    Show the beginners what the toolbar buttons are for, how to turn the gridlines off and on for printing, how to name ranges and refer to them in formulas, how to edit formulas, copy and paste special, transpose, how to use the worksheet functions.

    A Google search on Excel+Tutorial turned up 104,000 hits and Excel97+Tutorial turned up 884, so I imagine you can find some usable resources without too much trouble.
    Charlotte

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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    Great! Thanks!

    Can you think of a good reason to use a macro?

    Does anyone have a screenshot of Excel 2.0?

    Thanks!
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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    Make sure beginners know the difference between an absolute and a relative reference. More later. --Sam
    <font face="Comic Sans MS">Sam Barrett, CACI </font face=comic>
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  5. #5
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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    Here's an outline from Clark State Community College's Advanced Excel course. I'm sure that you can make it more concise and inprove on it

    1. Use macros to automate frequently performed tasks that require a series of steps by:
    Planning a macro
    Recording a macro
    Running a macro
    Editing a macro
    Using shortcut keys with macros
    Using the Personal Macro Workbook
    Adding a macro as a menu item
    Creating a toolbar for macros

    2. Use lists to organize and manage worksheet information by:
    Planning a list
    Creating a list
    Adding records with the data form
    Finding records
    Deleting records
    Sorting a list by one field
    Sorting a list by multiple fields
    Printing list

    3. Analyze and manipulate data and summarize list data that meets specific criteria by:
    Retrieving records with AutoFilter
    Creating a custom filter
    Filtering a list with Advanced Filter
    Extracting list data
    Creating subtotals using grouping and outlines
    Looking up values in a list
    Summarizing list data
    Using data validation for list entries

    4. Enhance charts and worksheet data to improve their appearance and make the data more accessible by:
    Selecting a custom chart type
    Customizing a data series
    Formatting a chart axis
    Adding a data table to a chart
    Rotating a chart
    Enhancing a chart
    Rotating text
    Mapping data

    5. Perform what-if analysis on spreadsheets by:
    Defining a What-If Analysis
    Tracking a What-If Analysis
    Generating a scenario summary
    Projecting figures using a data table
    Creating a two-input data table
    Using Goal Seek
    Setting up a complex What-If Analysis

    6. Summarize selected data in a worksheet, then list and display that data by:
    Planning and designing a PivotTable Report
    Creating a PivotTable Report
    Changing the summary function of a PivotTable Report
    Analyzing three-dimensional data
    Updating a PivotTable Report
    Changing the structure and format of a report
    Creating a PivotChart Report

    7. Sharing Excel data:
    Inporting & exporting text files
    Inporting & exporting Database files
    Inporting & Exporting HTML files
    Embedding & Linking
    Sharing Workbooks & Tracking Changes
    Creating Interactive worksheets and pivot tables for the Web

    8. Advanced Control Techniques:
    Finding Files
    Passwords & Protected cells
    Outlining a Worksheet
    Manual Calculations
    Custom AutoFill Lists
    Cell Comments
    Templates

    9. Use programming to automate spreadsheet by:
    Viewing code
    Analyzing Code
    Writing Code
    Adding a Conditional statement
    Prompting the user for data
    Debugging
    Creating a main procedure
    Running a main procedure
    <font face="Comic Sans MS">Sam Barrett, CACI </font face=comic>
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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    <hr>Can you think of a good reason to use a macro? <hr>
    Sure, you need macros if you put buttons or other form objects on a sheet or form and you want them to actually *do* something.

    You use macros to automate tasks that are repetitive and need to be done the same way every time.

    You use them to do things like applying a specific format to a selected range or to strip characters out, or to go to the end of selected range, or whatever else needs doing without a lot of user intervention.

    You also use them to automate other Office applications from Excel, which is definitely advanced stuff.

    A screen shot of Excel 2?!! Are you interested in archeology now? Or are you talking about Excel 4 (or was it 5?), which was part of the last version before Office 95 and VBA?
    Charlotte

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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    Nope, just excel 2. It was the first version, released in 1987 for the PC. I've got a small segment on history to explain the benefits of Excel, kind of a "Back in the old days, businesses and professionals, expecially in the accounting arena, used page after page of ledger to record thier data. This meant that when changes had to be made, they were physically erased from the worksheets, and re-entered, item by item..."
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  8. #8
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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    Good grief! You do realize, don't you, that Excel 2 didn't even require Windows? It came with a runtime version of Windows so it could run stand-alone on a DOS machine. Word was the same way back then. Microsoft got users hooked on the programs and then they had no choice but to move to Windows to get all the functionality *between* them. And naturally, subsequent versions required Windows. It was a sneaky and donwright brilliant marketing ploy.
    Charlotte

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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    <img src=/S/yep.gif border=0 alt=yep width=15 height=15> I know.. but surely there is a screen print out there somewhere... I just can't seem to find one... <img src=/S/wink.gif border=0 alt=wink width=15 height=15>

    In doing my research, I did find out some very interesting points though,

    In 1988, Apple Macintosh sued Microsoft for copyright infringement. The courts determined that Microsoft could use 7 of the 9 disputed items. And managed to have the remaining items dismissed. Imagine what might have happened if Microsoft lost that suit... <img src=/S/dizzy.gif border=0 alt=dizzy width=15 height=15>
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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    A history should also include Visicalc and Lotus 1-2-3?

    In about 1980, I worked on a mainframe spreadsheet-like application called Foresight.
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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    Yep, mentioned all that too.. very interesting reading indeed!

    For those of you who would like to catch up.. go <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.dssresources.com/history/sshistory.html>here.</A>
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  12. #12
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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    My 2 cents (Australian = 1 cent US) worth:

    The following is a random wishlist of things that I try to pass on to the people I work with when answering queries:

    Beginners (once you got past This is a row etc):
    - how to edit a formula in the formula bar
    - absolute vs relative and what happens when you copy a formula
    - strings vs numbers and why they can sometimes be hard to tell apart
    - Paste Special options (eg Values, formats, multiply)
    - spreadsheet design, eg don't hard code constants put them in a cell, think about the layout before you start, label everything in sight, put titles on all columns, add notes as you go (be nice if I followed my own advice)
    - range names and why you should use them
    - the selection total in the bottom right hand corner
    - basic formatting (font, number especially custom formats)
    - why merged cells are a pain in the *** and center across selection may be a better idea
    - don't be afraid to customize your toolbars
    - printing, including page break preview and how to move page breaks.
    - inserting and deleting rows and columns

    Advanced:
    - array formulae and what they are good for
    - subtotalling
    - conditional formatting
    - data validation
    - how to learn VBA by recording macros (you can teach VBA until you're blue in the face, but unless people are prepared to get their hands dirty you're wasting your breath)
    - where the VBA help is
    - what an object is, plus properties and methods
    - the little black square on the bottom right corner of the selection rectangle (no, I don't know the proper name for it) and what it is good for
    - charts

    Hope that is of some use

    Jon

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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    Not to mention Multiplan, which was Microsoft's earlier spreadsheet program, although I think they bought it from someone else.
    Charlotte

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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    Hi,

    A few items to add from the beginner's classes I've done:
    - talk about the shapes of the different mouse cursors and what they do. I find people are trying to do one function but don't have the mouse positioned properly. Perhaps not a problem with Excel 2? It doesn't have to be done at once (and I don't) but I do say right up front that the mouse will take on dif shapes that do dif things. I keep an area of the board where I draw the cursor shape as we introduce the concept.

    - as much as I say it, I always have to repeat it: when you're finished entering contents into a cell, you have to hit a key to get excel to recognize you're done. It ain't a mind reader. So hit enter, tab, arrows, etc. You'd be surprised how many people finish typing their name (one of my first exercises) in a cell and sit there wondering.

    - using the name exercise, we then adjust col width and talk about auto adjust. Definitely a crowd pleaser.

    - one of the items that always gets a "wow" is autofill (also adds to my cursor collection). I do several items on this that build on one another. For example:
    - type a word (your name) and fill it across cells - you get the same thing
    - now type Mon, Tue; select the 2 cells (another skill) and fill with that over many cells so you can see it repeat
    - same thing, time permitting, with Jan, Feb
    - now go to numbers: start with just any single number and fill contrasted with 2 cells - the idea is that Excel picks up the pattern
    - lastly, a combination of a word and number. for teachers, I do "Week1", "Week2" and fill. That's good so they can create a grade book
    - this also helps lead into the discussion of filling formulas, which I also use as a basis for introducing abs vs rel refs (I purposely set up some things so that when certain cells are filled, the result is 0, which is not expected). But, I have found, that abs vs rel refs is one of the hardest concept for a beginner to grasp.

    - go thru the order of calcs in a formula so that students understand the precedence of operations. I write on the board a simple equation like 4+6/2 and ask people the answer w/o using excel. Most always say 5. I then have them do it in excel and they get 7. I explain the order of precedence. Math teachers usually get the answer from the board or quickly understand it when they see excel's answer. Others don't get it so quickly.

    - lastly to wet their appetite for the advanced class, I have them create a col headed by "color" and have them enter "red", "green", "orange", etc. The next col is number. Of course at this point they don't know what this is for. Then I give out a bag of M&Ms (those little round candies that come in 7 or so colors; plain, not peanut). They have to count the # of each and enter it in the 2nd col. No eating - yet. Then we walk thru the chart wizard and create a pie chart. Then comes the fun part. they can eat a few of their M&Ms and adjust the count for that color and watch as the pie changes. I then show, without them doing it, how to customize parts of the chart (eg, change the pie wedge to match the color of the M&M; put in a fill to the chart area).

    With the last item, class is then dismissed.

    Probably not all of the above will apply to Excel 2 but just some thoughts.

    fred

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    Re: Ideas Welcome (Excel 97, SR2)

    > Can you think of a good reason to use a macro?
    Two:
    1) To automate repetitive tasks.
    2) To implement advanced stuff like buttons, etc.

    > Does anyone have a screenshot of Excel 2.0?
    Why are you still using Excel 2.0? I don't think that it even has macros. <img src=/S/laugh.gif border=0 alt=laugh width=15 height=15> --Sam
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