Inserting & Deleting (Mac)

Inserting Rows or Columns

Inserting rows and columns is slightly different than inserting a cell or cell range. So we'll start with rows and columns. The instructions and examples that follow are for columns, however it is basically the same for rows. Replace column with row and right with under.

There are multiple ways to carry out the following function.

1. Select the column to the right of where you want to insert a new column. (Go here to remind yourself how to select the entire column.)


Press Control on the keyboard while clicking with the mouse, and select Insert from the dropdown menu that appears.


The new column will be inserted:


2. Select the column to the right of where you want to insert a new column. Then click on Insert in the Cells group in the Ribbon. It will automatically add a column because you have selected a column. Insert also has a dropdown menu in which you can select to insert cells or a worksheet in addition to a column.


You can also insert more than one column at a time. For example, if you want to insert 3 adjacent columns here.


Highlight three columns starting with the column immediately to the right of where you want the inserted columns to be.


Then either CTRL+ click on the mouse and select Insert or click on Insert in the Cells group in the Ribbon.


Three blank columns appear maintaining the format of the selected columns.

You can also insert non-adjacent columns (for selecting nonadjacent columns go here). It can get a little tricky predicting where the new columns will be inserted. Columns will always appear to the left of the selected columns. For example, with these columns selected

you get these columns inserted:


If you had anticipated having an inserted column every other column, you didn't get it. But you'll notice that there is an inserted column to the left of the 'Less than High School' column, to the left of the 'Some College' column, and to the left of the 'Advanced Degree' column, which were the three selected columns.

Remember that the process for inserting rows is the same; simply replace rows with columns and right with under (or left with above).

 

Inserting Cells and Cell Ranges

Essentially, the process for inserting cells is the same as the process for inserting rows or columns. Say you wanted to insert a range of cells between the 1976 and 1977 data in the example below but you didn't want to affect the data to the right. Inserting new rows would add new rows to that data as well. Instead, you can insert a cell range.

 

Select the cell range the size that you would like to insert (in this case we are inserting a 4 x 9 cell range). Start the selection immediately below where you want the cells inserted because we are inserting a range of cells instead of rows.


As with inserting rows and columns you can either CTRL + click the mouse and select Insert or you can click on Insert in the Cells group in the Ribbon. If you click on Insert in the Cells group, it will automatically shift the cells down. If you right click the mouse and select Insert, you'll get this message:


In this example, we want to shift the cells down, however, there are situations in which you will want to shift the cells to the right. By opening this menu you can specify which you want, in case the default action when you click Insert in the Cells group is not the one you want. You can also reach this menu by clicking the arrow under Insert in the Cells group and selecting Insert Cells

The default when you click Insert in the Cells group is not always to shift downwards. The default direction is based on your selection.

When new cells, columns, or rows are inserted, references (e.g. formulas relating to the cells) will adjust accordingly (see formulas for more on this).

 

Deleting Cells and Cell Ranges

Say you decided you didn't need to have those extra cells between the Bronx and Brooklyn data after all, but you couldn't delete the whole rows because you still have that data set to the right. You select the cells you want to delete.

There are multiple ways to do this.

1. CTRL + click on the mouse and select Delete. This will give you a similar menu as when you inserted except it will say Delete and it will specify opposite directions for moving cells (move them up instead of down or left instead of right).

 
2.  You can also click on Delete in the Cells group in the Ribbon with the same caveats as mentioned when inserting (the default direction may not be the direction you wanted), or clicking on the dropdown menu under Delete and selecting Delete Cells to open the same menu in the image above.
 

Deleting Rows and Columns

Deleting works in very much the same was as inserting except that you click on Delete instead of Insert

Say you wanted to delete the selected rows.

 

There are multiple ways to do this.

1. CTRL +  click on the mouse and select Delete. This will give you a similar menu as when you inserted except it will say Delete and it will specify opposite directions for moving cells (move them up instead of down or left instead of right).


2.  You can also click on Delete in the Cells group under the Home tab with the same caveats as mentioned when inserting (the default direction may not be the direction you wanted), or clicking on the dropdown menu under Delete and selecting Delete Cells to open the same menu in the image above.

 

Delete Content Without Deleting Entire Row

There are multiple ways to do this.

1.  Press DELETE or BACKSPACE.

2.  CTRL + click the mouse and select Clear Contents. This will remove content but not the actual rows.

3.  Select Clear in the Editing group under the Home tab. This will automatically provide a dropdown menu.

4. You can also delete the contents of a cell while still entering the information (before pressing ENTER) by pressing ESC.

 

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