Section 3: Entering information into the Sheet

Mouse Basics

The mouse pointer appears differently, depending on what you are pointing to with the mouse.

When the pointer is a white cross, you can click from cell to cell to move the cell pointer.  You can click and drag to select a number of cells.  To select menus or buttons, the mouse pointer must appear as a white arrow.


Excel Mouse Pointer white cross

When you double click inside a cell, a vertical line or cursor appears

inside the cell allowing you to edit within a cell.  


Excel Mouse Pointer cursor in cell

When you move to the border around a selected cell (with the exception of the lower right corner), the mouse pointer appears as a 4-way arrow.  If you click and drag the cell border, you can perform a ‘Drop and Drag’, which will move the contents of the cell.


Excel Mouse Pointer 4 way cross

When you place the mouse pointer at the lower right corner of a selected cell, the mouse pointer appears as a black cross.  If you click and drag, you will perform a fill or copy & paste.  If you right click the mouse and drag, you will get a shortcut menu with various fill options.

Excel Mouse Pointer cross hair

The Right mouse button will access quick menus and a shortcut toolbar in Excel that you can use to choose some of the more common commands.


Entering Values and Labels

Values in Excel are generally numbers that you can use in mathematical formulas.  To enter a value, simply type in the number and press the Enter key.  The cursor will move down to the next cell.

Labels in Excel are generally headings and text.  To enter a label, simply type in the text and press the Enter key.  The cursor will move down to the next cell.