moderated Re: Excel 2016

Van Lant, Robin

Office 2016 is such a modern choice and I can’t imagine it’s that different, but I do think it’s time for you to call them. 


From: <> On Behalf Of John Doering
Sent: Thursday, August 18, 2022 9:25 AM
Subject: Re: Excel 2016


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Tried your suggestions and still no joy.

It seems you are using Office 360.  I am using Office 2016.

Maybe I need to call the MS Accessibility line to see if Office 2016 offers the drop down choices when setting up formulas/functions.

Thanks for your help.





John Doering
Pricing Analyst

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From: <> On Behalf Of Van Lant, Robin via
Sent: Wednesday, August 17, 2022 11:12 AM
Subject: Re: Excel 2016


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I’ve not used this feature in the past, but I’m really curious now and exploring it with you. So, here are my observations from playing around.

It seems that the driving factor of whether this works is if you have the setting to allow editing in cells turned on or off.  Recall that that is under Options in the Advance category.  That needs to be turned on.


From my testing, Brian is right that  the alt down arrow is a toggle for the setting to have formula autocomplete on., but I was misunderstanding how it worked.  I wonder if this is the issue you are having, too.  Whether I have the checkbox on the Options  menu for formula autocomplete turned on or if it’s off an i use the alt down arrow, I only get results if I type a letter after the equals sign. So, even if the formula autocomplete is turned on and I only type an equals sign in the cell, nothing happens and the  cell until I type a single letter, at which point it suggests functions with that letter. If you hear JAWS say a suggestion, you can arrow down through the options, If you don’t hear JAWS read out an option, you’ll need to do the alt down arrow, just like you would with a combo box. Then you can arrow through the list of suggestions and hit enter on the one you want.


Disappointedly, I don’t think there is a way to read the  tag that shows the syntax for the formula.  I’d like to figure out of there are options for that.


An alternative, especially for common functions or ones you don’t know is to type the equals sign, then hit Alt F3. This puts you in the formula bar and, if you hit alt down arrow, you get a list of common functions.   Hitting enter one of these opens a dialog box for arguments.  Further in the list is a More button you can use to search for functions alphabetically or with keywords.


The other trick I learned recently was to type the equals sign then a couple letters of the function you want then hit tab, which autocomplete the function and enters the opening parenthesis.  I suppose that works only if you are doing a function like vlookup or xlookup that is more unique that, say, a count function that could end multiple ways.


Using Windows 10, JAWS 2022, Office 365.

Robin Van Lant







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