INTRODUCTION TO MS-EXCEL (EXCEL 2007, 2010, 2013 and 2016) - (CHAPTER 1 – PART 1)

This chapter is sub divided into three parts and this is the first part. If you have already read this part, click to read part two - User Interface and Worksheet Operations in Microsoft Excel.
Click to read - Part 3: Business Applications of Functions in Microsoft Excel.

introduction to ms-excel

You can also watch the introductory excel video on youtube

Excel you tube video


This tutorial assumes that you don’t have any knowledge of any electronic spreadsheet package. It explains from the scratch, every bit of MS-Excel. So if you are a novice in spreadsheet management, you are at the right place. This tutorial is prepared for you.

Each chapter of this tutorial contains the procedures to achieve some tasks, some practical examples and some practical exercise for you in order to help you comprehend its content.

The first chapter contains the introduction to MS-Excel and its history. It also familiarizes you with some of its features 

It is recommended in this tutorial that you have a PC or an access to a computer system, so as to enable you practicalize the procedures and exercises. Also try as much as possible to practice the exercises in this tutorial for a deeper comprehension of the contents of this tutorial.
See the MS Access Full Course Contents.


In this tutorial, we are going to give you a grounded knowledge on spreadsheet management using Microsoft Excel. We assume that you don’t have any previous knowledge of spreadsheet management. This will enable us take it bit by bit to make sure you understood every aspect of spreadsheet management. So don’t be discouraged if this is your first time of hearing about Microsoft Excel or have never used it before.

Almost all career fields keep record of their business organizations and also directly or indirectly perform calculations and data analysis. Most of these fields have expanded and developed to an extent that they need a computerized system to help them perform some difficult tasks or calculation s efficiently and accurately. Some of these tasks include staff payroll system, forecasting and sales trend, students’ grade list, loan amortization, sales report, etc. With an electronic spreadsheet package like Microsoft Excel, all these tasks can be simplified and managed.

You can download the PDF e-book file of this chapter for FREE and study at your convenient time. The e-book contains the three parts of this chapter properly written. Click to download the e-book: Fundamentals of MS-Excel Using MS-Excel – 2016, 2013,2010 and 2007.
fundamental of spreadsheet management using ms-aexcel


This is a computer program that enables one to carry out calculations on several rows and columns of numbers. MS-Excel is a typical example of an electronic spreadsheet.

A spreadsheet can be used to perform mathematical and financial projects, budget, cash flow projections, stock price tracking, balance sheet, etc. in other words, spreadsheet is a programmed table of information much like an accountants ledger book designed with multiple rows and columns where numerical data could be entered and manipulated for easy financial interpretation and analysis.


These are programs or application systems used for spreadsheet management. There are many of them. Some of them include.
1.    Microsoft Excel
2.    Lotus 123
3.    Lotus Smart Suite
4.    Multi-plan
5.    Quattro pro
6.    Super cals
7.    Ami Pro
8.    Symphony, etc.


It is an integrated electronic spreadsheet and graphics software package designed to perform mathematical calculations on rows and columns and produces result which can be either qualitative or quantitative. It has some powerful tools that allow you perform variety of tasks for business, science and engineering. It can also be used in database management.


1.    It is used in preparing financial reports.
2.    It is also used in preparing financial budget.
3.    It is used in preparing financial budget.
4.    It is used to prepare students’ grade list.
5.    It can be used to prepare reports (both sales and expense).
6.    It is used in sales forecasting and trend.
7.    It is also used to prepare inventory management.
8.    It can be used to prepare Billing Statement
9.    It can be used to design Blood pressure Tracker
10.    It can be used to prepare Loan Amortization
11.    It can be used to Time Card 


Now let's begin fully to explain the basics and origin or history of Microsoft Excel and the various available versions so far.


MS-Excel is a very popular spreadsheet program designed mainly for Windows Operating System (OS), which is a very user friendly OS. As at 2016, there are about nine versions so far namely; Excel 2.0, Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel XP, Excel 2003, Excel 2007, Excel 2010, Excel 2013 and Excel 2016.

The first three are so obsolete that they are no more mentioned and were designed for older versions of Windows Operating Systems such as Windows 3.1, Windows 95 and 98.

Also, Excel XP and 2003 have most features alike, such that the knowledge of them permits one to work with other versions easily, both older and newer versions. Excel 2007, 2010 and 2013 also have most features alike especially 2010 and 2013. 

MS-Excel 2013 Welcome window

MS-Excel 2013 Welcome window

However, Excel 2007, 2010 and 2013 are quite different from the previous versions because the introduction of tab groups in place of the drop down menu system. The first visible difference between MS-Excel 2010 and 2013 is that Excel 2013 has some new already made templates available. Some of these new already made templates include:  


Excel 2016 for Windows has all the functionality and features you're used to, with some added features and enhancements. Here are some of the top new and improved features for Excel 2016.


These are some of the new functions added to MS-Excel 2016


This function combines text from multiple ranges, and each item is separated by a delimiter that you specify. Learn more about TEXTJOIN here.


This new function is like CONCATENATE, but better. First of all: it's shorter and easier to type. But it also supports range references in addition to cell references. Learn more here


Are you tired of typing complicated, nested IF functions? The IFS function is the solution. With this function, conditions are tested in the order that you specify. If passed, the result is returned. You can also specify an else "catch all" if none of the conditions are met. Learn about IFS here.


This function evaluates an expression against a list of values in order, and returns the first matching result. If no results match, the "else" is returned. Details and examples are spelled out here.


This function returns the largest number in a range that meets a single or multiple criteria. More information available here.


This function is similar to MAXIFS, but it returns the smallest number in a range, that meets a single or multiple criteria. Read more about the MINIFS function.

Here is a list of newly added features in MS-Excel 2016:

You can download the PDF copy of this chapter for free: Fundamentals of MS-Excel Using MS-Excel – 2016, 2013, 2010and 2007. It contains a full explanation of new features of MS-Excel 2016.
Go to Microsoft support for a detailed explanation of these new features of MS-Excel 2016 


MS-Excel is one of the programs of the multi-software package Microsoft Office. Microsoft Office package has five main Office programs namely: 
Some PC models like HP Windows 8 PC come with a pre-installed MS Office 2013 package. Search your PC to see if it came with a pre-installed   MS-Office Package. If you need MS-Office 2016, visit Microsoft store. There are some sites that allow you download a Copy of MS Office for free. Feel free to search the web. You can also get only MS-Access if you wish. MS-Office software is popular; so many software vendors will have it. Just check around few stores in your locality.


To load MS-Excel into your PC memory:
1.    Click the Start button located extreme left of the task bar.
2.    Type the word access to call up the search charm.
3.    From your search result, click on MS-Excel 2010 or MS-Excel 2013 or MS-Excel 2016 depending on the version installed on your PC .

Search results

Search results
 4.    Then windows loads the program into memory and MS-Access welcome window will display as shown below depending on the version installed on your PC.
MS-Excel 2010 Welcome window

MS-Excel 2010 Welcome window
MS-Excel 2013 Welcome window
MS-Excel 2013 Welcome window


To create a blank workbook in Excel 2013 and 2016, Click Blank workbook from the welcome window. But in Excel 2010, a blank workbook is created by default when you launch the program.

This is the end of part one of this chapter. 

Recommended MS Excel Textbook

Click Here to know more about the book.

Click to read – Part 2: Getting Started with MS-Excel and Its User Interface. Feel free to share this tutorial with your friends. See you in the next part of this chapter.