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Edit Mode and ESC: Excel

Many times during a computer class, a student will say - "I can't do what I am asking."  "The computer won't let me select that item from the ribbon."

My first response is to have them press the ESC [Escape] key which is located in the top left hand corner of the keyboard.  The reason I ask them to hit ESC is because most likely they are in edit mode.

Edit Mode
Edit mode means that they are making changes to the contents of a cell. Their cursor is blinking up on the formula bar. Sometimes they are in there by accident and didn't realize it before they began going through the steps which I am instructing on.

So if something is grayed out on the ribbon - press the ESC key and then it will mostly likely be available.

Note: Pressing the ESC key does eliminate any changes you were just making in that cell. Pressing ENTER will keep the changes.

If you have typed in something in a cell and it is wrong and you just want to start over - press ESC. The cell will return to the way it was before you started typing.

I love this picture.
I always tell people, the Escape key will get you out of places you don't want to be. This picture is just perfect.

"Escape Key" picture source:
I was not able to find the original source of this picture. The following is a list of other websites which have the picture.

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