Replacing Text

When you get a hold of your spreadsheet it's possible that it may include some text that will need to be altered before it's included in your hometowners. For example, many schools use standardized abbreviations for things like the person's class level, gender, major and degree. You shouldn't use abbreviations or codes in your spreadsheet as many newspapers and online readers won't know what these abbreviations stand for.

You can use Excel's Global Replace feature to transform these abbreviations into easy-to-use text.

For this example, we'll use a spreadsheet with abbreviated degrees and majors:


Here you'll notice that our students have a column labeled MAJOR and inside this column we have shortened codes for the degree and major the person has earned. To convert these columns into standard text, we'll highlight the column and press Control+H. This will open up our global replace search box:

We will then choose to search for BA-COM and replace it with Bachelor of Arts in Communications as you'll see above. Clicking on the Replace All button will let us know how many instances of this text has been replaced in our document:

We can then hit Control+H again do the same thing for the next abbreviation we'd like to replace (BS-BIO):

After replacing all of the text our spreadsheet will look like this: