Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Working with Functions
where FUNCTION is the name of the function, and argument1 , argument2 , and so forth
are arguments, which are the numbers, text, or cell references used by the function to
return a value. Arguments are always separated by a comma.
Not all functions have arguments. Some functions have optional arguments, which
are not required for the function to return a value, but can be included to provide more
control over how Excel calculates the returned value. If an optional argument is not
included, Excel assumes a default value for it. These tutorials show optional arguments
within square brackets along with the argument’s default value, as follows:
FUNCTION argument1 ,ƒ[ argument2 value2 ,ƒ...]) =
In this function, argument1 is required, argument2 is an optional argument, and value2
is the default value used for this argument. As you learn more about individual functions,
you will learn which arguments are required and which are optional, and the default
values used for optional arguments.
The hundreds of available Excel functions are organized into 11 categories. Figure 3-9
describes these different categories.
Optional arguments are
always placed last in the
argument list.
Figure 3-9
Excel function categories
Category
Functions That
Cube
Retrieve data from multidimensional databases involving online analytical
processing or OLAP
Database
Retrieve and analyze data stored in databases
Date & Time
Analyze or create date and time values and time intervals
Engineering
Analyze engineering problems
Financial
Have financial applications
Information
Return information about the format, location, or contents of worksheet cells
Logical
Return logical (true-false) values
Lookup & Reference
Look up and return data matching a set of specified conditions from a range
Math & Trig
Have math and trigonometry applications
Statistical
Provide statistical analyses of a set of data
Text
Return text values or evaluate text
You can learn about each function using the Help system. Figure 3-10 describes some
of the more common Math, Trig, and Statistical functions used in workbooks.
 
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