Did you know that there is a default order in which calculations occur in Excel?
And that you can change this order by using brackets? Calculate 4 + 3 x 6. What is your answer? The correct answer is 22. There are two basic Excel rules to remember.
Do you remember the acronym BODMAS? Brackets Over Division Multiplication Addition Subtraction Therefore if you wanted to calculate 4+3 THEN multiply the answer by 6 you would need to write the formula like this. (4+3)*6 Answer is 42. Here is one to practice. Solve 9 – 5 / (8 – 3) x 2 + 6 Answer 8.375 or 13? Step 1 9 – 5 / (8 – 3) x 2 + 6 = 9 – 5 / 5 x 2 + 6 Brackets Step 2 9 – 5 / 5 x 2 + 6 = 9 – 1 x 2 + 6 Division Step 3 9 – 1 x 2 + 6 = 9 – 2 + 6 Multiplication Step 4 9 – 2 + 6 = 7 + 6 Subtraction Step 5 7 + 6 = 13 Addition Noticed we did subtraction before addition? This is because we are calculating from left to right. The multiplication and division are in the same order, and subtraction and addition are in the same order. Therefore if we have a division and multiplication in the sum, we calculate left to right. Neither have precedence. Happy Excelling!
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AuthorJulie Goleby is the Director of Training in the Tropics Archives
August 2018
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