USPreadsheets: Upping Your Excel Game

Edited by: Victoria Chang 

Written by: Andre Neo

 Photos by: Ng Xinyu

Many students think that Microsoft Excel is something taught within the confines of a business or quantitative programme, but the students from the USPecial Projects committee thought otherwise. This resulted in the USPreadsheets workshop on the 15th of February. For two hours, NTU-USP students from various disciplines received a crash course in Microsoft Excel from Yi Jing, a third-year accountancy and business student.

During the workshop, NTU-USP students were taught how to use a variety of Excel keyboard shortcuts, as well as PivotTables and some lesser-known formulas. For this workshop, Yi Jing prepared some introductory worksheets for everyone to practice on and a full-fledged business problem that mimicked a typical data analytics scenario at the workplace.  For most of the participants, dealing with the business problem at the end was the biggest challenge.  Nevertheless, with some detailed explanations from Yi Jing, what seemed to be impossible data management turned out to be very manageable in the end.

“Microsoft Excel was designed to structure, organise and analyse the data that you face in your professional lives,” said Yi Jing. “Today, firms are increasingly focused on data analytics to help them guide their business decisions and their strategy, so Microsoft Excel is something that every NTU-USP student should be familiar with, regardless of their discipline.”

Sylvia, a second-year psychology student, agreed with Yi Jing. “I signed up because I think this knowledge will be useful for me in the future,” said Sylvia. “I had to do some data analysis before and I took forever.  This workshop was very useful and I think I achieved my aim of becoming better at Microsoft Excel.”


Tat Chong, a second-year business student, found the workshop useful despite having learnt about Microsoft Excel before. “The things we learn here are actually quite different – like how to use the keyboard shortcuts and how to use INDEX-MATCH formulas,” said Tat Chong. “It’s also a good form of revision for me, having only really done intensive Microsoft Excel in Year 1.”

Beginner or seasoned Excel user regardless, it seems that USPreadsheets taught everyone something new.  In a world where technology is starting to replace human effort, embracing it is the first step to staying relevant, and USPreadsheets indeed helped many NTU-USP students to take that first step.

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