Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Formatting Charts
Figure 6–20. Trading places: The student names now serve as the data series, replacing the subjects. Remember
that the legend always records the data series.
See the effect? The chart has been stood on its head, so to speak, or maybe its side.
While it was the test subjects that served as the chart’s original data series, now it’s the
student names playing that role—each student is now a data series. The data being
charted is exactly the same as before, but it’s being characterized by a new
perspective—sort of at a right angle to itself. Of course, if you click the Switch Row/Column
button a second time, you’ll be back where you started, and the subjects will be
reinstated as the data series.
Formatting Charts
Just as you can format your data, you can format and reformat your charts. And as with
data in cells, there are plenty of ways to modify chart appearances: by changing colors,
text fonts, or borders around the plot area, or by introducing data labels, chart titles, and
the like.
Of course, you need to know how to get to all these options—and in keeping with
Excel’s general approach, there are several ways available. Let’s take a look at them.
The first step in the formatting process, as usual, is to click the object you want to
format (depending on which approach you use, that click might utilize the left or right
button, as I’ll discuss). You need to be clear about exactly which object you have in
mind, because it’s easy to think you’re about to click the major gridlines when you’ve
really hovered your mouse over the plot area. That’s where Excel’s chart captions come
in; again, resting your mouse over a chart object triggers an identifying caption.
 
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