Starting Excel 97 as a Beginner

What you will learn from this lesson

With Excel 97 you will:

  • Explore the workbook window.
  • Navigate through the workbook.
  • Open an existing file.
  • Create an Excel worksheet.
  • Save your work to a file.
  • Quit Excel.
  • Use automatic fill.

What you should do before you start this lesson

Starting Excel 97

  1. Click the Start button in the lower-left corner.
  2. Position the mouse pointer on Programs
  3. Click Microsoft Excel.

Exploring the lesson

Exploring the Excel 97 window

When you start working in Excel, you begin using a workbook that contains screens called worksheets. They are identified as Sheet1, Sheet2, and so on. (Screens may vary, depending on the Office 97 package you have.) As you become more familiar with the available options in Excel, you can customize the menus and add buttons to the toolbars.

Here is the initial screen you see when you open Excel 97.

Moving around in the Excel 97 worksheet

There are a number of ways to move around in a worksheet. Moving from one cell to another in Excel is quick and easy. The ways to move from cell to cell include clicking a cell or using the Go To command, the scroll bars, the arrow keys, or the home, end, page up, and page down keys.
Moving within a window
To select any cell, click it. For example, click cell A1.
  1. To move one cell to the right, press tab, or to move one cell to the left, press shift+tab.
  2. To move one cell down, right, up, or left, use the arrow keys.
  3. To move to the first column of the worksheet, press home.
Moving from window to window
  1. To move one window down, press page down.
  2. To move one window up, press page up.
  3. To move to any cell, on the Edit Menu, click Go To, and type J18 or any cell number.

Creating an Excel 97 workbook

You can use worksheets to collect and analyze information, including lab records, lesson notes, school organization information, scientific data, weather journals, financial reports, nutritional diaries, and other data. Each worksheet can be easily customized and enhanced with graphics and artistic additions.
Creating an Excel workbook
  1. On the File menu, click New.
  2. On the General tab, double-click Workbook to open a new one.
  3. Click cell B2, and type Student List.
  4. Save as Assignment 1, to your folder.

Opening an Excel 97 workbook

While using Excel 97, you can open another workbook.
Opening an existing file with the menu bar
  1. On the File menu, click Open. 
  2. Double-click Book 1 (or any file you want to open).

  3. – or–
    Select the file name, and click Open.

Quitting Excel 97

There are several ways to quit Excel 97. Always follow proper procedures, or your work may not be saved. All Office 97 applications prompt you to save changes if you try to quit a program without saving your open workbooks.

Using automatic fill

Using the automatic fill feature in Excel 97, you can quickly and easily design useful charts for your classes. You can use this feature to create a calendar; a daily, weekly, or monthly checklist, or a special event or topic chart.
Creating a chart with automatic fill
  1. Make sure you have Assignment 1 open
  2. In cell C4, type Monday.
  3. Click and drag the fill handle (that little black square in the bottom right corner of the highlighted cell) to select the cells through cell G4.
  4. In cell C5, type Week 1.
  5. Click and drag the fill handle to cell G5.
  6. In cell B6, type September.
  7. Click and drag the fill handle to B14.
  8. Position the pointer in cell D2.
  9. On the Formatting toolbar, click the Bold button, and type Homework Assignments.
  10. Press enter.
  11. Save your work

Summarizing what you learned

In this chapter you have explored and practiced:

  • Using the workbook window.
  • Moving through the worksheet.
  • Creating an Excel 97 workbook.
  • Opening an existing workbook.
  • Saving your workbook to a file.
  • Closing a document and quitting Excel 97.
  • Using automatic fill.