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: Referencing a Worksheet Name.

Referencing a Worksheet Name

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated October 19, 2013)

Jon wonders if there is a function equivalent to =ROW() or =COLUMN() for worksheets. He needs to reference (for example) the fourth sheet in a workbook, but he can't be sure of the worksheet's name.

There are a couple of ways to approach this problem, depending on what you need to do. If you are working with a worksheet that has already been saved, then the following formula will provide you with the worksheet name for Sheet4:

=MID(CELL("filename",Sheet4!A1),FIND("]",CELL(
"filename",Sheet4!A1))+1,LEN(CELL("filename",
Sheet4!A1)))

You should note that there are couple of assumptions in this formula. First (and most importantly) it assumes that you know the initial name of the worksheet. In this case, the initial name is Sheet4. After the formula is in place, subsequent changes to the worksheet name will be reflected automatically in the formula. The second assumption is that the workbook you are working in has been saved. If it hasn't, then the formula returns an error until the workbook is saved and recalculated.

A different approach is to use a user-defined function. In VBA's object model, all the worksheets in a workbook are contained within the Sheets collection. These are, in turn, indexed. Thus, you can pass an index value to the function and get back the name of the worksheet at the collection's index number.

Function TabName(snum As Long) As String
    If snum > 0 And snum <= Sheets.Count Then
        TabName = Sheets(snum).Name
    End If
End Function

For instance, if you wanted to know the name of the fourth worksheet in the collection, you could use the following in your worksheet:

=TabName(4)

The function will work just fine, even in a workbook that has not been saved. It also returns the proper worksheet name even if the worksheets are renamed or moved around.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (7607) 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: Referencing a Worksheet Name.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Changing Many Link Locations

Word makes it easy to establish links between documents. If you need to change the locations for a lot of links at once, you ...

Discover More

Changing Decimal Commas to Decimal Points

If you have a document that was produced in a country where decimal commas are used instead of decimal points, you may be ...

Discover More

Automatically Opening a Document at a Specific Zoom Setting

Do you prefer to have your documents open at a specific zoom magnification? You can get whatever magnification you desire by ...

Discover More

Professional Development Guidance! Four world-class developers offer start-to-finish guidance for building powerful, robust, and secure applications with Excel. The authors show how to consistently make the right design decisions and make the most of Excel's powerful features. Check out Professional Excel Development today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Creating a Copy without Formulas

Excel makes copying worksheets (duplicating them) rather easy. However, you may want a worksheet copy that differs from the ...

Discover More

Returning a Worksheet Name

Need to know the name of the current worksheet? You can use the CELL function as the basis for finding this information and ...

Discover More

Determining a Worksheet's Number

When you add a new worksheet to a workbook, it receives a meaningful name such as "Sheet4" or "Sheet17." If you want to ...

Discover More
Subscribe

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

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

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 9?

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
Subscribe

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.