Computational Tools for Engineers - Introduction to Excel

Introduction to Spreadsheets

Spreadsheet programs are powerful tools to view, calculate, and visualize sets of tabular data. The tables have values, equations, and functions that are manipulated in cells that are organized into rows and columns. As values within the spreadsheet change, the dependent calculations in the workbook are updated.

Both Microsoft Excel and Google Spreadsheets will be used in this course although other tools such as OpenOffice can also be used.

Microsoft Excel is not a programming language but does include an integrated development environment for recording and running macros. Excel macros are a series of commands that can be repeated to operate repeatedly on different sets of data. This language is known as Visual Basic for Applications. This course first reviews spreadsheet programming and then extends the spreadsheet capabilities with Visual Basic for Applications.

As an introduction to Excel, the following tutorial demonstrates how to navigate through a workbook, create worksheets, select active cells, input equations, browse available formulas, and other basic Excel functions.

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