Using the Format Menu of Microsoft Office Excel 2003

MS Excel Format Menu in 2003

The formatting menu of Excel helps us to format the cells and the entire worksheet. It is through this menu that you can be able to change things like font, font colour, font size and other important features related to formatting. The formatting procedure is easy especially for any one conversant with word document formatting. The tools and commands used are very similar to those used in Ms Word. The only difference is that in Excel, the file is divided into rows and columns that intersect to form cells. These are the commands that you will encounter as you work with the format menu:

  • Cells – the format cells command is a very important one, it comprises of the following;

Format Cells Option of Excel 2003

Format Cells Option
Format Cells Option | Source

Features of MS Excel Format Menu in 2003

  1. Numbers tab– to set what you want, highlight the cells you want to apply the number format and then choose under the category what you want starting from general, that is it could be number, currency, accounting, date, time, percentage, fraction, scientific, text, special and custom.
  2. Alignment tab – the alignment tab is used for text alignment (horizontal and vertical) within a cell, text control (wrapping text, shrinking to fit and merging cells) and right to left alignment.
  3. The font tab – the format tab is very similar to that of Microsoft word. This is where you define the font, font style, size, underline styles, colour and special effects that you want.
  4. Borders tab – The borders tab is useful for setting inside and outside borders, it is also used for removing borders. If you do not set borders, whatever you print will appear like a Word document without the table structures. To set borders, highlight the area you want to apply them to and then go to format > cells > borders, then line colour and style for the outline before clicking on the outline. Select the colour for your inside and style before clicking on inside.
  5. Pattern tab – the pattern tab is used for applying fill colours or patterns to the selected cells.
  6. Protection tab – you can use the protection tab to hide and lock some items though not a very effective method as applying a password.

The Auto-format option of MS Excel 2003

The auto-format option allows to pick any design for your worksheet
The auto-format option allows to pick any design for your worksheet | Source

Features of MS Excel Format Menu in 2003

  • Row - when formatting the rows, you are able to set the following attributes; You can set the row height and autofit the row. You can also hide or unhide the selected rows. Hiding a row means it will not be visible together with its details.
  • Column – for column, you will use this tool to adjust the width, autofit selection, hide or unhide selected columns and you will also be able to set a standard width for your column.

The Auto-format Option

  • Sheet – the worksheet can be formatted in the following ways; you can rename, hide, unhide, change the background colour, and the worksheet tab colour.
  • Autoformat – the auto format tool allows you to apply pre-designed formats to your worksheet. Using the options button, you can specify what to auto format for instance number, border, font, patterns, alignment, and width/height.

Conditional Formating in MS Excel 2003

  • Conditional formatting – this command will allow you to format the selected part using a special format such as cell shading or font color, that excel automatically applies to cells if a specified condition is true. For instance, let say you have a list of peoples names and their country. You want to format those who come from Somalia to have a green colour and to be bold, instead of formatting one cell at a time you will use conditional format. You will select all your work, go to format > conditional formating and specify the conditions you want, Excel will format only the cells with the country Somalia.
  • Style – you can use this command to set various styles for instance comma style, currency, percentage.

Conditional Formatting in MS Excel 2003

Conditional formatting
Conditional formatting | Source

Higher Versions of Excel

We have higher versions of Excel but the best thing is that with Excel 2003 basic knowledge, you can tackle any other version comfortable. You will be able to accomplish many things on the newer versions without getting stuck. Yes, there are some new features included but they are easy to learn. Go out and check out what is included in the newer versions.

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© 2012 Patrick Kamau

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