05 - AutoSum and AutoCalculate


The AutoSum simply makes using the SUM function even easier, but only under the right conditions.

Basically what the AutoSum will do is sum a range that is visibly directly above or to the left of the cell that we use it in (the default is above) It will include all of the visible range until the first blank cell or the first cell containing text. Try these examples:

  • On a clean Worksheet put any numbers in the range D5:D10 
  • Select cell D15 and click the AutoSum icon on the Standard toolbar.
    • It's in the Home tab, on the on the right hand side of the screen .
    • The AutoSum icon looks like this: 
  • You should get the formula =SUM(D5:D14).

Notice it starts at cell D5.

This is because D4 is the first blank cell. It includes the empty range D11:D14 because it assumes we will want to add numbers within this range at some stage.

Auto Calculate

There might be times when you wish to find out the sum of a range of numbers quickly without having to add a formula to the Worksheet. For these instances, we can simply use the Auto Calculate feature of Excel.

To do this:

  • Select a range of cells containing the numbers you want to sum and look in the Status bar.
  • IF the range of cells you wish to sum are non-adjoining, hold down the Ctrl key while selecting the ranges.
  • We are not restricted to only displaying the sum of our selected range! If you right click on the Status bar a shortcut menu will pop-up allowing us to choose one of six basic formulas.
  • Have a look at each of these in turn 

See the video below to see how its done

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