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By the end of this lesson, learners should be able to:

  • Format the display of numbers
  • Format the date
  • Format the time
  • Format the display of percentages

Formatting Numbers in the Format Cells Dialog Box

Numbers in Excel can assume many different formats: Date, Time, Percentage or Decimals.

To Format the Appearance of Numbers in a Cell:
  • Select a cell or range of cells.
  • Choose Format Cells from the menu bar.

    Format and Cells Menu Selections

    (You could also right-click and choose Format Cells from the shortcut menu.)
  • The Format Cells dialog box opens.
  • Click the Number tab.

    The Number Tab on the Format Cells Dialog Box
  • Click Number in the Category drop-down list.

    The Number Tab on the Format Cells Dialog Box
  • Use the Decimal places scroll bar to select the number of decimal places (e.g., 2 would display 13.50, 3 would display 13.500).
  • Click the Use 1000 Separator box if you want commas (1,000) inserted in the number.
  • Use the Negative numbers drop-down list to indicate how numbers less than zero are to be displayed.
  • Click the OK button.

Formatting Date in the Format Cells Dialog Box

The date can be formatted in many different ways in Excel 2003. Here are a few ways it can appear:

October 6, 2003
10/06/03
10-Oct-03

To Format the Appearance of a Date in a Cell:
  • Select a cell or range of cells.
  • Choose Format Cells from the menu bar.
  • The Format Cells dialog box opens.
  • Click the Number tab.
  • Click Date in the Category drop-down list.

    The Number Tab on the Format Cells Dialog Box
  • Select the desired date format from the Type drop-down list.
  • Click the OK button.

Formatting Time in the Format Cells Dialog Box

The time can be formatted in many different ways in Excel 2003. Here are a few ways it can appear:

13:30
1:30 PM

To Format the Appearance of Time in a Cell:
  • Select the range of cells you want to format.
  • Choose Format Cells from the menu bar.
  • The Format Cells dialog box opens.
  • Click the Number tab.
  • Click Time in the Category drop-down list.

    The Number Tab on the Format Cells Dialog Box
  • Select the desired time format from the Type drop-down list.
  • Click the OK button.

Formatting Percentage in the Format Cells Dialog Box

There may be times you want to display certain numbers as a percentage. For example, what percentage of credit cards bills account for your total monthly expenses?

To Express Numbers as a Percentage in a Spreadsheet:
  • Select a cell or range of cells.

    Define Cell Range for Percentage Function
  • Choose Format Cells from the menu bar.
  • The Format Cells dialog box opens.
  • Click the Number tab.
  • Click Percentage in the Category drop-down list.

    The Number Tab on the Format Cells Dialog Box
  • Define the Decimal Places that will appear to the right of each number.
  • Click the OK button.

    Percentage Applied to Cell Range

Challenge!

  • Open your Monthly Budget file.
  • Format the numbers in the spreadsheet as Currency without the $ symbol.
  • Fill the formula from B19 to C19 through N19. This text Challenge 13 Text will appear in cell 19 of Columns D through N because expenses have not been entered for those columns yet.
  • Select Row 19 and format the numbers as a percent with no decimal places.

     

    An Example:

     

    Currency and Percent Example

     

  • Save and close the document.

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