A1 - Excel 2021 - Getting Started & Context

Getting Started with Data Visualization Excel Introduction Here we are going to get our feet wet by taking a straightforward data set and creating a visual for it. This will give us a sense of the basic visual capabilities of Excel. Keep in mind that while some tips for Excel for Mac OS are provided, this and other tutorials may require the full functionalities of Excel for Windows OS. We will also consider the potential context of this report, per our reading in storytelling with data. Preface Before we get started, I'd strongly recommend that you take three steps to help protect yourself from losing work or points in the future. 1) Establish a working folder Many students find it useful to create a folder structure like the following on their computer. Here, each deliverable has all files associated with it in its own distinct folder where you will download and work on any necessary files. 2) Verify Excel's AutoRecover is Enabled I would also strongly recommend that you go to File - Options - Save (In Mac, Excel - Preferences - Save) and verify that the checkbox beside "Save AutoRecover information every" is checked and consider setting the time to something less than 10 minutes as a lot of work can be created and lost in 10 minutes.
If you discover that your computer is stalling or acting sluggish because it is saving too often, you can always increase the interval to something higher. 3) Tell Windows to Show File Suffixes Operating systems sometimes hide file suffixes from the user to simplify the interface. This can lead to confusion, however, as the suffixes provide you with an important clue as to what the file is you are looking at, work on, or submit for credit. I would strongly recommend setting your operating system to show file suffixes by going to the View tab and checking the box to see the File name extensions (In Mac, go to Finder - Preferences - Advanced - Show all filename extensions). Windows OS: Mac OS:
Part 1 - Fundamentals In this section, we will tour the basic chart functions of Excel. Load & Prep Data 1. Download the file Stationary Company Sales.xlsx from the Source Data in the Course Essentials module on Canvas and save it to your working folder on your computer. 2. Using Excel, go to File - Open to open the file you just downloaded and save it as CIS310_A1_Lastname.xlsx . You now have a copy of the original unchanged data set you downloaded, and a working copy open that you have renamed. 3. Take a few moments to look at the data column by column in the first and only sheet, Orders, and assess what this data represents. 4. Scroll down to look over the data you have so that you see all the rows. Make sure there are no surprises, e.g., no missing data or strange values that suggest corruption. It is always tempting to try to "grab the data and run", but you'll generally be much happier in the long run if you stop first to look at what you are working with. This is a very simple orders sheet, and as such includes an order date, a destination (customer location), sales representative, product descriptors, and sales amount. Given the low frequency and volume of sales we might assume this is a subset of their overall business. 5. Hover your cursor over the G column heading at the top of the seventh column. Notice that the cursor turns into a down arrow, hinting at what happens if you click it. 6. Click on the G column heading, and you'll see that the entire column is selected. 7. Look at the bottom right of the sheet, underneath the horizontal scroll bar, and you can see summary statistics for the column. Anytime you select a range of cells, Excel attempts to provide you with a summary. This can be a good way to get a quick sense of what you're working with. Here we can see that the average amount of a transaction appears to be 456.46, and there are 44 rows of data (including one
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