Creating an Excel Chart, and Copying it to Word

Start with a spreadsheet like in Figure 1, where the cases (or independent measures) are contained in rows, and the measures (dependent variables are contained in columns.

Figure 1: Excel data cells
Figure 1

Select the columns and rows that contain the data, along with the column headings (in the first row). Do not select the first column (which contains the case identities. See Figure 2.

Figure 2: Data selection
Figure 2

Click on the Insert menu.

Click on Chart...

Select the Line chart for this demo. See Figure 3.

Figure 3: Chart type options
Figure 3

Click Next.

On the Data Range tab, next to the Series in: label, click to activate the Rows radio button. The word Series corresponds to cases, or the independent variable.

Click on the Series tab.

Click in the Name text box (Series1 should be highlighted in the Series scrollbox).

Click on cell a2, which contains the ID of the first case (series). See Figure 4.

Figure 4: Selecting data series
Figure 4

Click on Series2 in the Series scroll box. Click in the name text box, then click cell A3.

Repeat click cell a4 for Series3, and cell a5 for Series4.

Click Next.

Under the Titles tab, add the text "Effects of Exercise on VO2" in the Chart title text box.

Add "Time" in the Category (X) axis text box.

Add "VO2" in the Value (Y) axis text box.

Click on the Gridlines tab, and turn off the Major gridlines checkbox under the Value (Y) axis heading. See Figure 5.

Figure 5: Chart gridlines option
Figure 5

Click Next.

Click Finish.

Move the mouse cursor over the blank area between the outer border of the entire chart object (containing both the graph and its labels). Notice how the mouse pointer shows a ToolTip containing "Chart Area". See Figure 6.

Figure 6: Format chart area dialog
Figure 6

Right click and select Format Chart Area.

In the Border frame, click the None radio button.

Move the mouse over the graph so that the tooltip shows "Plot Area".

Right click and select Format Plot Area....

In the Area frame, click the None radio button. See Figure 7.

Figure 7: Format plot area dialog
Figure 7

Click OK.

The yellow line doesn't show up very well. To change it, move the mouse pointer over it on the Plot Area, so that the tooltip shows Series "3" Point "..." where ... refers to the data point along the line nearest where the mouse is resting.

Right click and select Format Data Series.

Under the Patterns tab, click the Color drop-down in the Line frame.

Click the red square. See Figure 8.

Figure 8: Chart data-line style
Figure 8

In the Marker frame, click the Foreground drop-down and select the red square.

Still in the Marker frame, click the Background drop-down and select the red square.

See Figure 9.

Figure 9: Chart data-points style
Figure 9

Click OK.

The series 4 line is cyan, which doesn't look good either. Hover the mouse over the line (see Figure 10) and repeat the process above to make it dark green.

Figure 10: Chart almost ready
Figure 10

The chart is now complete. Move the mouse cursor over the Chart Area.

Right click and select Copy. See Figure 11.

Figure 11: Copying chart object
Figure 11

Move the text cursor to the position where the chart is to be placed.

Press CTRL+V, or right click and Select Paste, or click the Edit menu, and select Paste.

The result is show in Figure 12.

Figure 12: Chart copied into Word document
Figure 12

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Content last updated: 2004-10-19