Section 2: Understanding Parts of the Excel Screen

Parts of the Excel screen

Quick Access Toolbar

The Quick Access Toolbar allows you to quickly access shortcut tools that you use most frequently. By clicking the drop arrow just to the right of the Quick Access Toolbar, you will display a menu.  The check marks beside the options in the menu indicate that those tools are displayed.  You can display any of the features in the list that appear above the first horizontal line by clicking on them.

Title Bar

The Title Bar is a horizontal bar located at the top of your screen showing the current file name and the name of the program.  On the far left of the Title Bar is the Quick Access Toolbar.  On the far right of the Title Bar are 3 icons.  The X is the Close Button for Excel.  The middle icon will restore down the size of the window and it will change to maximize once you click restore down.  Double clicking the Title Bar will also restore down or maximize the window.  The Minimize Button is positioned to the left of the Restore Down Button and is used to reduce the window to an icon on the Taskbar.


When you open Excel you will see the Ribbon, which is part of the Microsoft Office Fluent user interface, at the top of the window.  The Ribbon contains 3 main components; Tabs which display different categories of options; Groups within Tabs that show related items together; Commands such as buttons, boxes and menus. 

You can minimize the Ribbon by double-clicking the name of the active Tab. Double-click a Tab again to restore the Ribbon.  To use the Ribbon while it is minimized, click the Tab you want to use, and then click the option or command you want to use.  

Name Box

The Name Box appears below the Ribbon and will display the name of the current cell or a named range.

Formula Bar

Name Box

The formula bar is to the right side of the Name box and below the Ribbon.  It will display the active formula or contents of a cell.  It can also be used to edit cell contents.  As you are entering data into a cell, an X and a check mark will appear; clicking the X will cancel and the check will accept data.

Column and Row Headings

Column headings are alphabetic and are displayed in the row directly above the worksheet cells.

Row headings are numerical along the left side of the screen.