1. Technology
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Creating a Drop Down List in Excel Part 1

Using a Drop Down List for Data Entry

By

Adding Data Using a Drop Down List

Adding Data Using a Drop Down List

© Ted French

A drop down list allows you to enter data into an Excel spreadsheet from a pre-set list of entries. This can be done to make data entry easier or to limit the number of acceptable choices.

Related Tutorial: Expanded Step by Step Tutorial with Screen Shots on Creating a Drop Down List in Excel

Example: Creating a drop down list in Excel

As shown in the image to the right, this example will create a drop down list containing the names of four different types of cookies in cell E2.

  1. Enter the following data into cells:

    A1 - Gingerbread
    A2 - Lemon
    A3 - Oatmeal Raisin
    A4 - Chocolate Chip
    D2 - Cookie Type:


  2. Click on cell E2 - the cell where the drop down list will be located

  3. Click on the Data tab

  4. Click on the Data Validation option from the ribbon to open the drop down menu

  5. In the menu, click on Data Validation to bring up the Data Validation dialog box

  6. Click on the Settings tab in the dialog box

  7. From the Allow menu choose List

  8. Click on the Source line in the dialog box

  9. Highlight cells A1 - A4 in the worksheet

  10. Click OK to close the dialog box and return to the worksheet

  11. A down arrow should appear next to cell E2 indicating the presence of the drop down list

  12. When you click on the arrow the drop down list should open to display the four cookie names

  13. Clicking on a name in the list will enter the selection into cell E2

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.