A unique approach weaves background information about data with practical, hands-on lessons that develop fundamental research skills all students should understand. Easy-to-follow tutorials provide readers with step-by-step instructions to quickly begin analyzing data without having advanced knowledge of data analysis or statistics. Extensive illustrations throughout the book demonstrate to readers how to understand data. End-of-chapter On Your Own exercises challenge readers to develop their skills through easy-to-use data files and questions to reinforce the chapter learning objectives. Student Study Site includes data sets that readers can use to test their data literacy

Spreadsheets as Database Managers

So far, we have used Excel to perform simple spreadsheet operations: doing math, running functions. That has helped us travel far toward our goal of going from data to knowledge. Our next step is learning how to use Excel as a lightweight database manager. We can use Excel to sort and filter our data so we can uncover meaningful patterns. We can use Excel pivot tables to group our data by categories and then calculate summaries (counts, sums and averages) for those groups.


Excel and other spreadsheets allow us to sort our data in different ways. We can sort numbers and dates in ascending order, meaning lowest to highest, or alphabetically with text. If we ...

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