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: Converting Codes to Characters.

Converting Codes to Characters

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated December 26, 2015)

Computers store information internally using numeric values. The information we see on our screens, as characters, is nothing but a conversion of those numbers into the characters associated with those numbers. Excel includes a built-in worksheet function that allows you to convert numeric values into their associated characters, as follows:


This example function converts the numeric value at A3 to its corresponding character. The conversion is done using an extended ASCII character set. For instance, if A3 contained the value 65, then this function would return the capital letter A.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2434) 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: Converting Codes to Characters.

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. ...


Quickly Changing Font Sizes

A quick little shortcut can help you easily step through different font sizes for whatever text you've selected. Word ...

Discover More

How to Stop a Table Row from Splitting Over Two Pages

Do you want your table rows to be split between pages? Word allows you to format the table so that rows stay together and ...

Discover More

Endnotes by Chapter

Word allows you to easily add endnotes to your document. It even allows you to specify where those endnotes should appear ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Capitalizing Just a Surname

Changing the capitalization of text is, believe it or not, a common task in Excel. Common or not, it can be frustrating ...

Discover More

Reordering Last Name and First Name

If you've got a list of names in a column, you may want to change the order of each name. For instance, the name have the ...

Discover More

Using the CONCATENATE Worksheet Function

The process of combining string (text) values to make a new string is called concatenation. Excel provides the ...

Discover More

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.


If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is four less than 8?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)

This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.