### Excel Training: Using Sparklines to display trends visually

One of the great new features of Excel that users enjoy employing during our Microsoft Excel Courses here in London is the Sparklines. These can be thought of as mini-Charts that reside in a cell, and can show a trend visually of a group of values.

In the example shown below there are sales figures from four store locations, London, Manchester, Birmingham and Liverpool. We want to see the trend of these figures visually beside each Department row, rather than create a separate Chart.

Start by selecting the range of cells required for the Sparklines. In the example above, Cells B6:E6.

From the Insert Ribbon select the Sparkline style required e.g. Line

The Create Sparklines dialog appears.

Select the location where the Sparkline should be displayed e.g. F6

Click OK – The Sparkline will appear in the chosen cell as seen below.

With the Sparkline cell selected you will see the Sparkline Ribbon – Design.

From this Ribbon you can chage the appearance and type of Sparkline e.g. from Line to Column or Win/loss.

Once the format has been completed you can copy the Sparkline to reflect other values, by copy/paste or using the AutoFill.

Sparklines are not visible in earlier versions of Excel (prior to 2010).

The Sparklines option will not be available if a Workbook is opened in Compatibility Mode.

### Excel Training: Finding the Highest and Lowest Numbers

If you have a lot of data in Excel and you want to find the highest or lowest number in a row, column or range of cells, Excel provides an easy way to produce this answer for you, without the need to sort your data.

Lowest number:

The Excel function to find the lowest number in a range is =MIN()

For example, say you have a lot of numbers in cells C5 to C15. If you want to find the lowest number in that range, and show the answer in cell C4, you would:

• Click on cell C4
• Type: =MIN(
• Use the mouse to select and drag from cell C5 to C15, let go of mouse button
• Type: )
• Press Enter.

Note: if you want to include another set of data, simply separate each range with a comma. eg. “C5:C15,E5:E15″

Highest number:

Similarly, if you want to find the highest number, say from a new range of numbers, D5 to D15, you would use the =MAX() function.

So, if you want to show the answer in cell D4, you would follow these steps:

• Click on cell D4
• Type: =MAX(
• Use the mouse to select and drag from cell D5 to D15, let go of mouse button
• Type: )
• Press Enter.