In What Ways Is MS Excel Used to Interpret Data?

By Andrew Aarons

At its core and in its simplest functions, Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet program. You enter data into rows and columns from which you can use Excel's data visualization features and tools to analyze the data -- with charts and graphs, filters and formulas.

Charts and Graphs

Once you have data inserted into a spreadsheet, use the "Insert" section of Excel to visualize the information in a chart or graph. Select a range of cells and then click on the type of chart or graph you wish to insert. Double-click on the chart after to redefine its range of cells. Creating a visual representation of data can help you interpret it.

Filters and Formulas

You don't need to visualize your data to be able to interpret it. Using Excel's wide range of formulas you can create totals for financial spreadsheets or define ranges of data to include or exclude from reports. All formula controls are on the "Formulas" tab of the ribbon in Excel. Highlight the top row of a spreadsheet and click "Filter" on the "Data" tab to make your data sortable and filterable; then use the down arrows on each column to select data to display.