School data tutorials

[cross-posted at LeaderTalk]

Even when principals and teachers have access to data, they often aren't sure what to do with it. That's why CASTLE (okay, it was me!) created School Data Tutorials, a web site intended to help K-12 educators work with raw student and school data.

The tutorials on the web site highlight many of the Excel skills that are helpful when working with building- and district-level data. The tutorials are targeted at data managers, principals, guidance counselors, teachers, and other school personnel who have the responsibility for collecting, analyzing, and reporting K-12 performance data (which is just about everyone these days!). You will see that the tutorials are much like the ones created by Atomic Learning (they trained us!) but are focused on data-driven decision-making needs of educators rather than being generic.

Below are the four sets of tutorials we recommend for every teacher and administrator. If every educator knew how to do these four things, schools' capacity to do some basic monitoring of student progress would be greatly enhanced. They take just over half an hour to watch once, and of course they can be viewed as many times as necessary to accomplish mastery.

Many more tutorials are available on the site, including instructions on how to make your own data collection templates. Let me know if you feel empowered after watching these!

Freeze panes

  • Freezing rows to remain visible
  • (1:11)
  • Freezing columns to remain visible
  • (0:40)
  • Freezing both rows and columns to remain visible
  • (0:49)


    • Sorting data using a single criterion
    • (3:04)
    • Sorting data using multiple criteria
    • (2:29)
    • Sorting data with multiple header rows
    • (1:27)


      • Filtering data with AutoFilter
      • (1:13)
      • Analyzing data with AutoFilter
      • (1:45)
      • Using Custom AutoFilter to filter numerical values less or greater than a specified value
      • (1:41)
      • Turning filters off
      • (0:34)
      • Printing datasets from AutoFilter
      • (1:39)
      • Copying just the dataset obtained from AutoFilter
      • (2:23)
      • Using the Esc (Escape) key to clear selections and copy another dataset
      • (1:16)

        Conditional formatting

        • Changing a numerical cell's color with single conditional formatting conditions
        • (2:17)
        • Changing a numerical cell's color with multiple conditional formatting conditions
        • (1:50)
        • Changing a text cell's color with single conditional formatting conditions
        • (0:55)
        • Changing a text cell's color with multiple conditional formatting conditions
        • (2:53)
        • Changing a cell's color with calculated value conditions
        • (3:58)

          Note that you may need to turn off your browser's pop-up blocker

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