moderated Re: Navigating Microsoft Excel with JAWS 2021
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Response disclaimer: I'm using Excel 2010 on a Windows 7 computer so if my suggested keystrokes yield differing results than you get, this might be the reason.
I'll add to Sieghard's excellent explanation by encouraging you to consider using Excel's powerful auto filtering feature. Auto filtering provides a way to quickly find or narrow down your search if you know the content of the column you're examining and wish to filter it by keyword or other options depending on the column's content. Here are the steps to do this:
1. Place focus in the cell which is the column heading of the column you wish to filter.
2. Press ctrl + shift + l to turn filtering on. Each column heading in the row where focus is will become a drop down box for accessing the auto filter settings.
3. You should probably press ctrl + s to save your spreadsheet at this point so that auto filtering will remain turned on and in case you mess anything up when playing with auto filtering.
4. Press alt + down arrow to open the filtering list of choices. I would caution you against executing any of the Sort options and instead use the Text filter option. The caution against sorting is because if you have blank rows anywhere in the spreadsheet, sorting it can mess up your data. You can access the text filter setting from the column heading cell of your column of choice by pressing alt + down arrow as previously mentioned and either arrowing down until it is announced and right arrowing over to its submenu choices or by pressing the f key.
5. The Text filter has many choices including Equals, Does not equal, Begins with, Ends with, Contains, and Does not contain. I prefer the Contains filter because choosing it will open a text box where you can type a keyword you think might be included in the column text you are filtering/searching.
6. After typing the keyword in the presented text box and pressing enter, Excel will display all the rows immediately below your location that contain the keyword you entered.
7. After using the Auto filter, make sure you return to the column heading cell of the column you filtered and press alt + down arrow to open the filtering choices, and arrow down to Clear filter from Windows function and press enter to remove the filter and display the complete unfiltered spreadsheet again.
8. You might not save the spreadsheet when done in case your data was inappropriately altered while filtering.
Auto filtering is smart enough to know the contents of the column you are filtering and present applicable choices when you access its filter options. For example, if the column you are filtering is formatted as numerical, the filter choices presented when you alt + down arrow in the cell with its column heading will include options such as equals, does not equal, is greater than, is less than, etc.
Like everything, getting good with auto filtering takes practice and I encourage you to start playing with it to get that practice. If you would like a sample Excel file to practice with, I have a two-column spreadsheet containing Windows 10 run commands where I've turned on auto filtering and I'll be happy to share it.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of Sieghard Weitzel
Sent: Sunday, March 28, 2021 12:34 AM
Subject: Re: Navigating Microsoft Excel with JAWS 2021
There are no headings in excel nor can you navigate by first letter navigation.
Idf you want to go to the end of data in a column you can press the "End" key followed by "Down Arrow". For example, if you had data in column A and in rows 1 through 50 and let's say you are in row 1. If you press End followed by Down Arrow you would instantly jump to the last row where there is data, e.g. Row 50. If you have data in row 1 through 50 and then you have a blank row and you again have data in rows 52 through 100, pressing End + Down Arrow in any row between 1 and 49 will take you to row 50, the last row which has anything in it. You can then down arrow to row 51 which is blank, down arrow again to row 52 which is the first row of the next block of data and if you then press Ent + Down arrow you land in row 100 which is the last row with data in that section.
The same applies to going left to right, if you have data in Row 1 and columns A through J and you are in column A you can press End + Right Arrow and you jump to Column J which is the last column with data.
If I have data in a column, is there a way to quickly navigate with first letter navigation or can I use a heading marker similar to using headings in Microsoft Word to jump from one section to another without needing to have blank cells in the column? Hope my question makes sense.