Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Ranges on Multiple Worksheets.

Ranges on Multiple Worksheets

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 9, 2012)

Most everyone knows that if you want to refer to a range of cells, you simply specify the beginning and ending point of the range and then separate those points by a colon. For instance, the following formula would return the sum of all cells in the range A1 through C4:

=SUM(A1:C4)

You may not know, however, how you can refer to the same cell or range of cells on a range of multiple worksheets in your workbook. For instance, you may want a cell to return the sum of each cell A1 on the first three worksheets in your workbook. If the worksheets are named Sheet1, Sheet2, and Sheet3, then the formula would appear as follows:

=SUM(Sheet1:Sheet3!A1)

Similarly, if you wanted the sum of all cells in the range A1 through C4 on each of the same worksheets, you would use the following formula:

=SUM(Sheet1:Sheet3!A1:C4)

At times this notation can be a bit difficult to remember. You can easily use the mouse to build such a range by following these steps:

  1. Select the cell in which you want to enter your formula.
  2. Enter the equal sign and the first part of the function, followed by the opening parenthesis. In the examples given above, you would enter =SUM(.
  3. Click on the sheet tab of the first sheet in the range.
  4. Hold down the Shift key as you click on the sheet tab of the last sheet in the range.
  5. Use the mouse to select all the cells in the range on the visible worksheet.
  6. Press Enter.

Your formula should now be complete, with the desired range in place.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2104) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Ranges on Multiple Worksheets.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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