Many texts are available to help graduate students and researchers design studies, understand statistical methods, and conduct analyses using standard software, but little exists that helps with the creation of data sets. Microsoft Excel has evolved into a remarkably sophisticated data entry and statistical analysis system, with an extensive toolkit that can make these processes efficient and accurate. This is a practical step-by-step guide to using Excel in the data preparation process. The book includes plentiful screenshots, text boxes summarizing important points, examples from across the social sciences, and questions at the end of each chapter. In addition, a sample dataset will be available online for students to download and use for all the examples and exercises throughout the text. This brief book is intended to familiarize students, teachers, and researchers with the Excel toolkit, and provide strategies that ease the task of data creation and analysis.

an Introduction to Excel

This chapter provides a brief introduction to Microsoft Excel, the spreadsheet program built into the Microsoft Office suite. If you know Excel pretty well, you may not find this chapter very informative. If you're not sure, I would recommend you give Figure 3.1 and Table 3.1 a look. If you already know about all the lettered parts of Figure 3.1 and all the navigation tools in Table 3.1, you probably have a pretty good basic understanding of Excel. If not, you probably should at least skim this chapter.

Figure 3.1 The Excel Window

Figure 3.1
Table 3.1 The Most Useful Excel Navigation Keys
KeyAction
ArrowMove one cell in the direction of the arrow. If Scroll Lock is on, move the sheet one cell in that ...

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