Chapter 2

Understanding Excel’s Statistical Capabilities


Working with worksheet functions

Creating a shortcut to statistical functions

Getting an array of results

Naming arrays

Tooling around with analysis

Using Excel’s Quick Statistics feature

In this chapter, I introduce you to Excel’s statistical functions and data analysis tools. If you’ve used Excel, and I’m assuming you have, you’re aware of Excel’s extensive functionality, of which statistical capabilities are a subset. Into each worksheet cell you can enter a piece of data, instruct Excel to carry out calculations on data that reside in a set of cells, or use one of Excel’s worksheet functions to work on data. Each worksheet function is a built-in formula that saves you the trouble of having to direct Excel to perform a sequence of calculations. As newbies and veterans know, formulas are the “business end” of Excel. The data analysis tools go beyond the formulas. Each tool provides a set of informative results.

Getting Started

Many of Excel’s statistical features are built into its worksheet functions. In previous versions (pre-2003), you accessed the worksheet functions by using the Excel Insert Function button, labeled with the symbol fx. Clicking this button opens the Insert Function dialog box, which presents a list of Excel’s functions and the capability to search for Excel functions. (On the Mac, this button opens the Formula Builder, which is pretty much the same thing.) Although Excel 2016 ...

Get Statistical Analysis with Excel For Dummies, 4th Edition now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.