Functions for Beginners: First Steps in Microsoft Excel

Excel functions are pre-built formulas that perform specific calculations. In this lesson you can learn basic information about functions in Excel.

To enter a function, first select the cell where you want the result of the calculation to appear.

Insert function

Functions in Excel run by clicking on the icon Insert Function.

Excel functions insert function button

There are several ways to find the interesting feature in the Search function you can type the name of the function (if you know it) or one word, what the function should do.

Excel functions Insert Function dialog box

Functions categories

You can also choose the category you can find us an captivating feature, for example Financial functions.

Excel functions Insert Function Financial

Clicking on the name of the function in the window Select a function under the list of names we see a description of the function. In many cases, this description allows us to understand, for what that function is.

Excel functions Insert Function sum function

After selecting a function (in the example below SUM function), a dialog box Function Arguments appears. Type cell addresses to the first pane, below displays the current result of the function (if possible the calculation). Provided it is already known a description of the function and even below a description of the argument and what function does with them.

Excel functions Function Arguments sum function

There are basic information, which you must know. More you will find in this webpage.

There are many functions available in Excel, including mathematical functions, financial functions, date and time functions, and text functions. You can use functions to perform complex calculations and make your work in Excel more efficient.

Further reading: 
Charts 101
How to Use Trig Functions in Excel?