Entering data and doing repetitive calculations with Excel


 Domenic Parks
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1 Entering data and doing repetitive calculations with Excel Start by entering preliminary data in columns. Label each column. If you need to do repetitive calculations on your data before you make a graph, you can have Excel do the repetitive work for you. For example, in the blue food coloring and bleach demo, our raw data consisted of times and absorbances. However, the graphs we will be making will be concentration vs. time, the natural log of concentration vs. time, and the inverse of the concentration vs. time. You ll need to get the data into the correct form before making the graphs. You could do each calculation separately on your calculator, or you could enter formulas so that Excel does these calculations. (This is much easier!) Each formula must start with = (the equals sign). Some symbols used in excel: + addition  subtraction * multiplication / division ln() take the natural logarithm of the number in parentheses For scientific notation: to input the number , enter 6.022e23. If you wanted to input something with a negative exponent, such as , enter 1.3e4. Using exponents: to raise a number to a power, use the ^ key. 4 2 would be entered as 4^2. For example, let s assume you entered the following data: (You should enter your data for experiment 1. It will be different than this.) time (min) Absorbance To have Excel calculate concentrations for you so that you don t have to do it by hand, we ll apply a formula. Since graphs are easiest to make if the x and y data are next to each other with the x values on the left, we ll make another table. 1. Select and copy the set of times to another location in the excel workbook. 2. Set up the heading of the column next to it to read conc BFC, M (concentration of blue food coloring in units of molarity). 3. The handout states that the concentration of BFC (in M) is equal to the absorbance multiplied by To set up the formula, click in the first cell of the new column. Enter =, then click on the cell that contains the absorbance at Chem 1B 1 Fossum
2 the corresponding time. Type *5.0e5 and hit the return key. If the steps were followed correctly, the result in the cell should be the absorbance multiplied by To repeat this same calculation for the rest of the absorbances, click on the cell you just set up with the formula, and copy it. Drag it down to cover the rest of the cells in the column, and paste. Now you should have a new table with times on the left and concentrations on the right. Graph 2 1. To set up another table for the next graph, copy and paste the times in a new section of the workbook. 2. Label the next heading ln [BFC]. In the first cell, enter =ln( and then click on the first concentration that corresponds to the first time. Hit return. Excel should have calculated the natural log of the concentration. 3. Copy this formula from the first cell and paste it to the rest of the cells. Now you have the next data table for the next graph. Graph 3 1. To set up the table for the inverse concentration vs. time graph, copy and paste the list of times in another section of the worksheet. 2. Label the heading for the next column 1/[BFC]. In the first cell, enter =1/, click on the first concentration in the list, and press return. This should take the inverse of the concentration. 3. Copy this formula and paste it in the rest of the cells in the column, and you ve got your third data table. Graph 4 This should be a graph of concentration of blue food coloring vs. time for Experiment Enter the times and absorbance readings for Experiment Copy the set of times to a new location in the Excel worksheet. 3. Set up the heading of the column next to it to read conc BFC, M (concentration of blue food coloring in units of molarity). 4. To set up the formula, click in the first cell of the new column. Enter =, then click on the cell that contains the absorbance at the corresponding time. Type *5.0e5 and hit the return key. If the steps were followed correctly, the result in the cell should be the absorbance multiplied by Copy and paste this formula in the remaining cells in this column. Now you should have a new table with times on the left and concentrations on the right. Chem 1B 2 Fossum
3 Making Graphs Using Microsoft Excel 2007 or 2010 (for Windows) 1. Open/Start Excel, and start a new blank workbook. 2. Enter the data for the graph in two adjacent columns. You can start the columns anywhere on the workbook. Include headings at the top of the table. Make sure you list the data for the xaxis on the left and the data for the yaxis on the right. Follow directions on pp. 12 of this handout to use Excel to do repetitive calculations. 3. Once all of the data has been listed, highlight the data (only data, not headings) and from the Insert menu, choose scatter chart. Choose the option that shows points but no lines drawn between the points. We will be adding our line later. (If you choose one of the options with lines drawn, Excel will just connect the dots instead of drawing the best fit straight line!) A small graph will appear on your workbook. 4. We want all of our graphs to be fullpage graphs. In the top right corner, there should be an option to move chart. Click on this, and then choose new sheet. Your graph should then appear fullsized on one of the pages of the workbook, labeled as chart 1 or chart 2 or something similar. 5. Using the Layout menu, you can then add a chart title, axis titles for the x and y axes, and major and minor gridlines for both the horizontal and vertical axes. Also check axes choose which more options to format the axes further. 6. You can also modify the axes by hovering over them until the axis name pops up, then rightclick to get a menu of options. 7. To get the bestfit straight line, under the Layout menu, choose trendline and then linear (or other, if appropriate). Things to check: If you re plotting only one set of data at a time, remove the legend on the side of the graph. (If we had more than one line on the graph, the legend would be useful, but we don t.) Make sure your graph has a descriptive title. Axes must be labeled with quantity and units. The axes should be chosen to spread out the plotted points on the page. If the points are not spread out, you can change the minimum and maximum values for the x and y axes. Both major and minor gridlines should be used. Major and minor gridlines must follow the 1, 2, 5 rule. Sometimes Excel won t follow this rule, and you will need to manually change the minor gridline divisions. For example, if the minor gridline divisions are every 0.04, this doesn t follow the 1, 2, 5 rule. You would change it to either 0.05 or 0.02 instead. The y axis should appear on the left side of the page. The x axis should appear at the bottom of the page. If they appear anywhere else (top or right), there is a way to fix it. Find format axis and axis options. For example, if your xaxis appears on the top of the page instead of the bottom, hover over the yaxis until vertical (value) axis pops up. Rightclick on this, and a menu pops up. You can set the horizontal (category) axis crosses at to your lowest y value. This will move the xaxis to the bottom of the page. Chem 1B 3 Fossum
4 Making Graphs Using Microsoft Excel 2003 or Open/Start Excel. 2. Under the File menu, choose New. A blank workbook opens. 3. Enter the data for the graph in two adjacent columns. You can start the columns anywhere on the workbook. Include headings at the top of the table. Make sure you list the data for the xaxis on the left and the data for the yaxis on the right. 4. Once all of the data has been listed, highlight the data (only data, not headings) and press the chart wizard button on the Excel standard toolbar. The picture on this button looks like a small bar graph. 5. Chart Wizard Step 1 of 4 : Choose the type of graph. (We will be doing XY scatter plots.) For the chart subtype, you should usually choose the one with just the points and no line drawn on the points. Press Next. 6. Chart Wizard Step 2 of 4 : If you had not already selected the data, you could do so now. If you already have, press Next. 7. Chart Wizard Step 3 of 4 : You have many options here. Under the Titles tab, enter the title of the graph and the labels for the Value (X) axis and the Value (Y) axis. Under the Gridlines tab, make a checkmark in each of the boxes to show both major and minor gridlines for both the x and the y axes if you want to be able to estimate values from the graph easily. Under the Legend tab, I usually uncheck the box Show legend, so that series 1 does not appear in the final graph. There s no need for a legend if there is only one set of data plotted. Click next. 8. Chart Wizard Step 4 of 4 : You can now choose whether to place your graph as a small graph in a document, or as a fullpage graph. Choose as new sheet for a fullpage graph. Press Finish. 9. If you d like to change the starting/ending points of either of the axes or change the size of the increments on the graph: Put the cursor over the axis you want to change until the name of the axis pops up. Click. On the Format menu, click Selected Axis. Click the Scale tab, and then select the options you want. For the best graphs, choose the minimum and maximum so that your data points are spread out on the page. Also, check the values of the major unit and minor unit to make sure that the values follow the 1, 2, 5 rule. If they don t, change them so that they do. For example, if the minor unit is 0.04, change it to 0.05 so that it will be easier to estimate between the lines of the finished graph. 10. If you d like to remove or change the shading of the background of the graph: Point the cursor on a part of the plot with no points or lines, until Plot Area pops up. Click. One the Format menu, click Selected Plot Area. Under Area, select None for a blank background. 11. If the graph is supposed to be a straight line, you can now have Excel draw the best straight line through your points. Under the Chart menu, choose Add trendline. You will get a choice of different types of functions. Choose linear, and it will draw the best fit straight line for you. Chem 1B 4 Fossum
5 Practice: 1. Here is some data for a first order reaction with a rate constant of 0.20 min 1 and an initial concentration of 4.00 M. To practice making a graph, enter this data into your workbook. time, min conc, M Follow the steps described (#410), and make a graph of concentration vs. time. Include the title, label the axes, show the gridlines, and make this a fullpage graph. 3. As you can see, this graph is not a straight line. For this particular type of function, you can get Excel to draw a trendline. Under the Chart menu, choose Add trendline. Then, under Type, choose exponential. Even if there is error in the data, the program will draw the best exponential curve to fit the data. Note: this doesn t work for every type of function! This function (concentration vs. time for a first order reaction) happens to be exponential. 4. Now let s convert this data into its straight line form and make a graph of the straight line. As mentioned, this is data for a first order reaction. A plot of ln[a] vs. t should be a straight line. Go back to your workbook (choose sheet 1 on the tabs shown on the bottom edge of the workbook). 5. Make another table. List time as the first column, and ln of concentration as the second column. Use the same times listed above, and have Excel calculate the natural log (ln) of each of the above concentrations. Enter the results in the table. 6. Select this new set of data, and follow steps 411 to create a graph. This graph should be a straight line, so when you choose add trendline, select linear as the type of function. Chem 1B 5 Fossum
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