Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Understanding Cell References.
Understanding Cell References
Most Excel workbooks are created to record and analyze data. To do this effectively, you
enter data in cells in a worksheet, and then reference the cells with data in formulas that
perform calculations on that data, such as adding the total of a column of numbers as
part of a budget.
Entering Relative, Absolute, and Mixed References
• To enter a relative reference, type the cell reference as it appears in the worksheet.
For example, enter B2 for cell B2.
• To enter an absolute reference, type $ (a dollar sign) before both the row and column
references. For example, enter $B$2.
• To enter a mixed reference, type $ before either the row or column reference. For
example, enter $B2 or B$2.
• Select the cell reference you want to change.
• Press the F4 key to cycle the reference from relative to absolute to mixed and then
back to relative.
Diane has already done a lot of the work on her family budget. She used data from
the past year to estimate the couple’s monthly expenses for the upcoming year and
entered this data into an Excel workbook. You will open this workbook and review her
estimates of the family’s monthly expenses.
To open Diane’s workbook:
1. Open the Drake workbook located in the Excel3\Tutorial folder included with
your Data Files, and then save the workbook as Drake Family Budget in the
2. In the Documentation worksheet, enter your name in cell B3 and the date in
3. Switch to the Budget worksheet, and then review its contents.
4. Scroll down to view the range A18:N32. This range lists Diane’s estimate of her
family’s monthly expenses by category for the upcoming year. See Figure 3-1.