How to Add, Copy, and Move Worksheets Within Excel Workbooks

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Natalie Boyd

Natalie is a teacher and holds an MA in English Education and is in progress on her PhD in psychology.

In Microsoft Excel, users can add, copy, or move worksheets to compile data. Learn about combining documents, worksheets vs. workbooks, and how to add, copy, or move worksheets within Excel workbooks. Updated: 10/12/2021

Worksheets in Excel

Randy is compiling some data for his team at work, and he's using Microsoft Excel to put the data in spreadsheets. Randy's boss asked him to put the information from different quarters into different worksheets, but the data is in many different documents. What can he do?

An Excel worksheet is an individual spreadsheet. It is part of a workbook, or Excel document. Each workbook can have one or more worksheets. For example, Randy needs to have one document, or workbook, with four different worksheets, one for each quarter.

To help Randy compile all the data he needs into one workbook, let's take a look at how to add, copy, and move worksheets in Excel and how to move or copy worksheets from one Excel document to another.

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  • 0:01 Worksheets in Excel
  • 0:53 Add, Copy, Move
  • 4:50 Combining Documents
  • 6:24 Lesson Summary
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Add, Copy, Move

Okay, so Randy has some information that he needs to put into an Excel workbook. He knows that he needs four different worksheets in that workbook, one for each quarter, and he already has some information on the last two quarters in different workbooks. But he needs to input the information for the first two quarters into his Excel workbook. How does he do that?

To add a new worksheet in Excel, Randy will want to follow a few simple steps:

  1. Start a new Excel document or workbook. Once Randy opens Excel to start a new document, there are automatically several worksheets (usually three). How can Randy tell which worksheet he's on? Near the bottom of the page, he'll see tabs labeled 'Sheet1,' 'Sheet2,' and so on. These are the different worksheets in the document, and he can toggle between them.
  2. To add more worksheets, click on the tab furthest to the right. This tab has a little icon that looks like a new sheet, and that's exactly what it does; it adds a new worksheet to the ones that already exist.

That's pretty simple so far, but Randy doesn't want his worksheets to be named 'Sheet1' and 'Sheet2,' so he'll want to change the names of the worksheets. To rename a worksheet in Excel, Randy will want to do one of two things:

  1. Right click on the tab for the sheet to be renamed. This allows Randy to type in the new name for the sheet and hit enter to make the change.
  2. Use the ribbon at the top to rename the sheet. The ribbon is the menu along the top of Excel. All Randy has to do is make sure he's on the 'Home' menu, in the 'Cells' section, and click on 'Format' ('Edit' on a Mac) and 'Rename.' He'll be able to rename the worksheet that he's currently viewing.

Either one of these will allow Randy to rename the worksheets so that they are more descriptive. For example, he'll probably want to name one sheet 'Quarter 1' and another sheet 'Quarter 2.' That way, the members of his team are able to know at a glance which worksheet tab to click on.

This is a great idea, but when Randy creates the worksheets, he realizes that he accidentally put the worksheet for the second quarter before the worksheet for the first quarter. Uh-oh! He wants to rearrange the worksheets so that they are in the right order.

To move a worksheet in Excel, Randy can do one of three things:

  1. Drag the worksheet tab into the new order. This is the quickest and easiest way to reorder worksheets in Excel. It involves using the mouse to grab the tab at the bottom of the screen and move it to the right or the left. For example, Randy can drag the second quarter tab to the right of the first quarter tab so they are in the right order.
  2. Right click the tab for the sheet to be moved. Randy can also right click his mouse on the tab at the bottom of the screen. A menu will pop up and he can click on the 'Move or Copy' option on that menu. From there, he'll see a dialogue box that will let him decide what order to put the worksheet in.
  3. Use the ribbon at the top to move the sheet. This is similar to what Randy did to rename the sheet. He can use the home tab and the cells section in the ribbon, click on 'Format,' and then click on 'Move or Copy.' The 'Move or Copy' dialogue box pops up, and he can choose which order to put the sheets in.

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