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11.1 Understanding Data, Data Validation, and Data Tables

  • Data can be qualitative or quantitative.
  • There are four levels of measurement for data.
  • Data verification and the Data Validation tool can ensure the quality of data in your spreadsheets.
  • Excel Data Tables can be used to quickly format information in a professional manner.
  • Data Tables can be used to filter and better understand the information contained in a spreadsheet.

11.2 Statistical Functions

  • Data analysis is critical for any business to be successful.
  • Excel’s built-in statistical functions, such as SUM, AVERAGE, MODE, RANGE, and MEDIAN, provide basic information about a dataset.
  • The Analysis ToolPak add-in provides a collection of statistical tools for data analysis such as regression and ANOVA.
  • Descriptive Statistics is a quick way to summarize a dataset by giving you values such as the average, the range, and the maximum number.
  • Regression is used for forecasting and budgeting.
  • The Solver add-in is used to find optimal solutions given a set of predetermined constraints.

11.3 What-If Analysis

  • Scenario Manager and Goal Seek are part of the What-If Analysis tool group.
  • The Scenario Manager is a tool that allows you to investigate the impact of various changes to input cells on target cells.
  • The Scenario Manager can give you a summary of all scenarios to help with decision making.
  • Goal Seek is used when you have a single input variable.
  • Goal Seek is used to set a target value for a cell by changing the values in another cell.

11.4 PivotTables/Charts

  • The PivotTable Analyze tab offers tools to make data analysis and filtering easier.
  • Timelines can be inserted to filter the PivotTable data by date.
  • Slicers can be used in PivotTables and Data Tables to filter data with visual buttons.
  • Calculated fields can be added to PivotTables for additional analysis using formulas.
  • The List Formulas tool creates a separate worksheet that includes all formulas used in the PivotTable. It is a valuable tool when there are multiple users of a single workbook.

11.5 Data Analysis Charts

  • There are many types of charts to visually present your data.
  • Some options for charts or graphs include bar charts, pie charts, column charts, line graphs, and scatter plots.
  • A column chart can be used to show comparisons between groups.
  • A line chart is useful to show changes over time.
  • Scatter plots visually show the relationship between two variables and are often used with regression.
  • Chart templates can be created for chart formats you use frequently such as those with company colors or logos.
  • The Quick Analysis tool gives you access to several options such as conditional formatting, adding totals to the rows or columns, or quick links to creating a chart of the data.
  • Sparklines added to your Data Table can be used to quickly assess trends.

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