Excel Worksheets: Best Practices

2 Credits: Computer Software & Applications


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Excel Worksheets: Best Practices

Course Level
CPE Credits

2 Credits: Computer Software & Applications

Course Description

Excel worksheets and workbooks are commonly considered number crunching tools. The primary focus is getting data into a worksheet, performing a few calculations, and arriving at an answer as quickly as possible. However, this prevalent mindset ignores many of the real goals and needed controls over worksheets that make them valuable decision-making tools. This course will examine worksheet and workbook best practices for layout and design, including segregating data, assumption, and calculations as well as documenting data sources and key calculations using comments. The materials will also cover important worksheet audit and other tools that ensure accuracy such as data validation, error checking, and inputting passwords to protect cells, worksheets and workbooks. Step-by-step instruction with screenshots and an Excel practice file are provided to enhance the learning experience.

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Learning Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Recognize worksheet layout and design best practices, noting Excel features that promote data clarity
  • Identify the various Excel features that help audit worksheets and ensure calculation accuracy
  • Recognize the defining characteristics and usage of data validation tools, cell and worksheet protection, workbook protection, formula auditing tools, error checking, and tracking changes
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Course Specifics

Course ID
Revision Date
February 7, 2023

There are no prerequisites.

Advanced Preparation


Compliance Information

NASBA Provider Number: 103220

CFP Notice: Not all courses that qualify for CFP® credit are registered by Western CPE. If a course does not have a CFP registration number in the compliance section, the continuing education will need to be individually reported with the CFP Board. For more information on the reporting process, required documentation, processing fee, etc., contact the CFP Board. CFP Professionals must take each course in it’s entirety, the CFP Board DOES NOT accept partial credits for courses.

Meet The Experts

Joseph Helstrom Headshot

Joseph Helstrom, CPA, is a partner at CFO Resources, LLC, a company focused on training and courseware for CPAs. He’s also the owner of Mill Creek Publishing LLC. Joe has over 30 years of experience as a CPA in both public accounting and industry, with extensive experience in financial reporting and analysis, treasury, tax, information technology, legal and regulatory matters, and strategic planning. After graduation from Butler University with a degree in accounting, Joe got his start at Ernst & Young. Subsequent to that, he has served for several different companies as a chief financial officer; director of treasury and …

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