Microsoft Excel Glossary

Excel Glossary of Terms and Useful Definitions

This short Excel glossary introduces some of the key terms that you will meet when starting to work with spreadsheets in Microsoft Excel.

  • AutoComplete - An Excel feature that automatically completes your entries based on labels you typed previously.
  • AutoFill - Excel's capability to automatically fill in adjacent cells with data using the fill handle.
  • Cell Address - The location of a cell at the intersection of a column and row.
  • Command Buttons - Buttons or other controls in the Ribbon that allow you to perform functions on an Excel sheet.
  • Conditional Formatting - Formatting where the value of a cell determines how it is formatted.
  • Fill Handle - A quick way to generate data with a black triangle in the bottom right-hand corner of a cell that automatically fills in data based on the data in adjacent cells.
  • Formula - Operators and cell ranges that calculates values in order to give the result.
  • Function - The combination of an operator and cell range that performs predefined calculations.
  • Label - Text within a cell that identifies the sheet contents so readers can interpret the contents more easily.
  • Nested Function - A function that uses another function as one of its arguments.
  • Office Button (Excel 2007) - The button at the top left-hand corner of Excel or other Office 2007 applications: it takes the place of the previous File menu.
  • Quick Access Toolbar - A control near the top of the Excel window that contains shortcuts to frequently used menu items and commands that can be customised freely.
  • Range - A group of cells that has been selected; the cells can be either contiguous or discontiguous.
  • Ribbon - A feature of Excel 2007 and later; a set of tabs and controls at the top of the Excel menu.
  • SharePoint - A web system that enables collaborators to access shared documents, create new files, and collaborate via a centralised, web-based set of resources.
  • Smart Tag - A method of labelling data that lets you integrate actions normally performed in other programs directly in Excel.
  • Task Pane - A window within the main window that opens when you need it or when you click a Dialog Box Launcher icon.
  • Template - A prebuilt layout and set of formatting instructions (fonts, colours, etc.) that you can apply to a workbook quickly without having to format everything from scratch.

You will be introduced to all of these terms and more on our Systematix Excel training courses.