Using Microsoft Excel as a Database

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1 Using Microsoft Excel as a Database Whether it is a personal list of phone numbers, a contact list for members of an organization or team, or a collection of tourist sites, hotels, or travel agencies, an Excel database file makes it easy to enter, store, and find specific information. Microsoft Excel has built it tools to help you keep track of data and to find specific information when you want it. As well, with its hundreds of columns and thousands of rows, an Excel spreadsheet can hold an enormous amount of data. The steps in this tutorial are: 1. Entering the Data - How data is stored 2. Entering Data Correctly - How to avoid common errors 3. Rows are Records - Organizing your data 4. Columns are Fields- Organizing your data 5. Creating the Table - Create the database 6. Using the Database Tools - Sorting and filtering data 7. Expanding the Database - Adding new records 8. Completing the Database Formatting - Formatting the title and cell color

2 1. Entering the Data - How data is stored Tables of data Tables of data The basic format for storing data in an Excel database is a table. Once a table has been created, Excel's data tools can be used to search, sort, and filter records in the database to find specific information. Enter the data as it is shown in the image above. 2. Entering Data Correctly (Leave no Empty Rows or Cells) When enter the data, it is important to ensure that it is entered correctly. Other than row 2 between the spreadsheet title and the column headings, do not leave any other blank rows when entering your data. Also, make sure that you don't leave any empty cells. Data errors, caused by incorrect data entry, are the source of many problems related to data management. If the data is entered correctly in the beginning, the program is more likely to give you back the results you want. 3. Rows are Records Each individual row of data, in a database is known as a record. When entering records keep these guidelines in mind:

3 Leave no blank rows in the table being created. This includes NOT leaving a blank row between the column headings and the first row of data. A record can contain data about only one specific item. A record must also contain ALL the data in the database about that item. There can't be information about an item in more than one row. 4. Columns are Fields While rows in an Excel database are referred to as records, the columns are known as fields. Each column needs a heading to identify the data it contains. These headings are called field names. Field names are used to ensure that the data for each record is entered in the same sequence. Make sure that all the data in a column is entered using the same format. If you start entering numbers as digits (such as 10 or 20) keep it up. Don't change part way through and begin entering numbers as words (such as ten or twenty). Be consistent. Do not leave blank columns in the table. 5. Create the table Once the data has been entered, it can be converted into a table. To do so: 1. Drag select the cells A3 to E13 in the spreadsheet. 2. Click on the Home tab. 3. Click on the Format as Table option on the ribbon to open the drop down menu. 4. Choose the blue Table Style Medium 9 option to open the Format as Table dialog box. 5. While the dialog box is open, cells A3 to E13 on the worksheet should be surrounded by the marching ants. 6. If the marching ants surround the correct range of cells, click Ok in the Format as Table dialog box. 7. If the marching ants do not surround the correct range of cells, drag select the correct range in the spreadsheet and then click Ok in the Format as Table dialog box.

4 8. The table should have the drop down arrows added beside each field name and the table rows should be formatted in alternating light and dark blue. 6. Using the Database Tools For help on these steps, refer to the image above. Once you have created the database, you can use the tools located under the drop down arrows beside each field name to sort or filter your data. Sorting Data 1. Click on the drop down arrow next to the Last Name field name. 2. Click on the Sort A to Z option to sort the database alphabetically. 3. Once sorted, Graham J. should be the first record in the table and Wilson. R should be the last. Filtering Data 1. Click on the drop down arrow next to the Program field name. 2. Click on the check box next to the Select All option to clear all check boxes. 3. Click on the check box next to the Business option to add a check mark to the box. 4. Click OK. 5. Only two students - G. Thompson and F. Smith should be visible since they are the only two enrolled in the business program. 6. To show all records, click on the drop down arrow next to the Program field name. 7. Click on the Clear Filter from "Program" option. 7. Expanding the database To add additional records to your database: Place your mouse pointer over the small dot in the bottom right hand corner of the table. The mouse pointer will change into a two - headed arrow.

5 When this happens, click and hold down the right mouse button and drag the pointer down to add a blank row to the bottom of the database. Add the following data to this new row: Cell - Data A14 - ST B14 - Christopher C14 - A. D14-22 E14 - Science 8. Completing the database formatting 1. Drag select cells A1 to E1 in the spreadsheet. 2. Click on the Home tab. 3. Click on the Merge and Center option of the ribbon to center the title. 4. Click on the Fill Color (looks like a paint can) on the ribbon to open the fill color drop down list. 5. Choose Blue, Accent 1 from the list to change the color of the background in cells A1 - E1 to dark blue. 6. Click on the Font Color icon on the Formatting Toolbar (it is a large letter " A ") to open the font color drop down list. 7. Choose White from the list to change the color of the text in cells A1 - E1 to white. 8. Drag select cells A2 - E2 on the spreadsheet. 9. Click on the Fill Color on the ribbon to open the fill color drop down list. 10. Choose Blue, Accent 1, Lighter 80 from the list to change the color of the background in cells A2 - E2 to light blue. 11. Drag select cells A4 - E14 on the spreadsheet. 12. Click on the Center option on the ribbon to center align the text in cells A14 to E At this point, if you have followed all the steps of this tutorial correctly, your spreadsheet should resemble the spreadsheet pictured in Step 1 of this tutorial.

6 Using Microsoft Word (mail merge) as a database Introduction Mail merge is a useful tool that will allow you to easily produce multiple letters, labels, envelopes, name tags and more using information stored in a list, database, or spreadsheet. In this lesson, you will learn how to use the mail merge wizard to create a data source and a form letter, and explore other wizard features When you are performing a Mail merge, you will need a Word document (you can start with an existing one or create a new one), and a recipient list, which is typically an Excel workbook. To Use Mail Merge: 1. Open an existing Word document, or create a new one. 2. Click the Mailings tab. 3. Click the Start Mail Merge command. 4. Select Step by Step Mail Merge Wizard. Selecting Step by Step Mail Merge Wizard

7 The Mail Merge task pane appears and will guide you through the six main steps to complete a mail merge. The following is an example of how to create a form letter and merge the letter with a recipient list. Step 1: 1. Choose the type of document you wish to create. In this example, select Letters. Selecting a document type 2. Click Next: Starting document to move to Step 2. Step 2: 1. Select Use the current document.

8 Selecting a starting document 2. Click Next: Select recipients to move to Step 3. Step 3: Now you'll need an address list so that Word can automatically place each address into the document. The list can be in an existing file, such as an Excel workbook, or you can type a new address list from within the Mail Merge Wizard. 1. From the Mail Merge task pane, select Use an existing list and then click Browse.

9 Browsing for a data source 2. Locate your file in the dialog box (you may have to navigate to a different folder) and click Open. Choosing a file 3. If the address list is in an Excel workbook, select the worksheet that contains the list and click OK.

10 Selecting a table 4. In the Mail Merge Recipients dialog box, you can check or uncheck each recipient to control which ones are used in the mail merge. When you're done, click OK to close the dialog box. Use check boxes to include or exclude recipients 5. From the Mail Merge task pane, click Next: Write your letter to move to Step 4. If you don't have an existing address list, you can click the Type a new list button and click Create. You can then type your address list.

11 Step 4: Now you're ready to write your letter. When it's printed, each copy of the letter will basically be the same, except the recipient data (such as the name and address) will be different on each one. You'll need to add placeholders for the recipient data, so that mail merge knows exactly where to add the data. If you're using mail merge with an existing letter, make sure that the file is open now. To Insert Recipient Data: 1. Place the insertion point in the document where you wish the information to appear. 2. Select Address block, Greeting line, Electronic postage, or More items from the task pane. Inserting an address block 3. Depending on your selection, a dialog box may appear with various options. Select the desired options and click OK.

12 Adjusting the address block formatting 4. A placeholder appears in your document. For example: «AddressBlock». 5. Repeat these steps each time you need to enter information from your data record. 6. From the Mail Merge task pane, click Next: Preview your letters to move to Step 5. For some letters, you'll only need to add an Address block and Greeting line. Sometimes, however, you may wish to place recipient data within the body of the letter to personalize it even further. Step 5: 1. Preview the letters to make sure the information from the recipient list appears correctly in the letter. You can use the left and right scroll arrows to view each document.

13 Previewing the letters 2. Click Next: Complete the merge to move to Step 6. Step 6: 1. Click Print to print the letters.

14 Printing the letters 2. The Merge to Printer dialog box opens. Click All, and then click OK. The Merge to Printer dialog box 3. The Print dialog box will appear. Adjust the print settings if needed, and then click OK. The Print dialog box Assignement 1. Open an existing Word document. If you want, you can use this example. 2. Download this recipient list. 3. Use the Mail Merge Wizard to merge the letter with the recipient list. 4. Place an Address Block at the top of the page, and a Greeting line above the body of the letter. 5. Print the document.

15 Reference:

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