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Excel ROW Function Tutorial

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ROW Function Overview
Excel ROW Function

Excel ROW Function

© Ted French

ROW Function Overview

The ROW function can be used to:

  • return the number of the row for the cell where the function is located in the worksheet
  • return the number for a row of a given cell reference

In an Excel worksheet, the rows are numbered top to bottom with row 1 being the first row and row 1,048,576 being the last row.

Therefore, the ROW function would return the number 1 for row A and 1,048,576 for row 1,048,576.

The ROW function can be used in Excel macros and it can also be combined with other functions in carrying out complex calculations.

The ROW Function Syntax and Arguments

The syntax for the ROW function is:

= ROW ( Reference )

Reference - (optional) the cell or range of cells for which you want to return the row number

If the reference argument is omitted the function returns the row number of the cell reference where the function is located.

Examples Using Excel's ROW Function to Find Data

The first example omits the Reference argument and returns the row number based on the function's location in the worksheet.

The second example returns the row number of the cell reference entered as the Reference argument for the function.

Example 1 - Returning the Row Number of the Function's Location

  1. Click on cell D3 - this is where the results of the first function will be displayed

  2. Click on the Formulas tab of the ribbon menu

  3. Choose Lookup and Reference from the ribbon to open the function drop down list

  4. Click on ROW in the list to bring up the function's dialog box

  5. Since we are not entering a cell reference for the Reference argument, click OK to complete the function and close the dialog box

  6. The number " 3 " appears in cell D3 since the function is located in third row of the worksheet

  7. When you click on cell D3 the complete function =ROW ( ) appears in the formula bar above the worksheet

Example 2 - Using the Reference Argument

  1. Click on cell E3 - this is where the results of the second function will be displayed

  2. Click on the Formulas tab of the ribbon menu

  3. Choose Lookup and Reference from the ribbon to open the function drop down list

  4. Click on ROW in the list to bring up the function's dialog box

  5. In the dialog box, click on the Reference line

  6. Click on cell B7 in the worksheet to enter the cell reference into the dialog box

  7. Click OK to complete the function and close the dialog box

  8. The number " 7 " appears in cell E3 since the cell B7 is in the seventh row of the worksheet

  9. When you click on cell D3 the complete function =ROW (B1) appears in the formula bar above the worksheet
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