Step away from Excel for a few minutes and marvel at the chart building possibilities available on Google Docs.

If you have a Google account (and if you’re an AU student, of course you do), log into your Google account and get to Google Docs. You know that you can upload text files and spreadsheets there. Click on one of the spreadsheets you have (and if you don’t have one uploaded, you can take a spreadsheet you’ve been working on in Excel and upload it to Google Docs).  Up at the top is a little button that looks like a red and blue bar graph. That is where the magic happens.

Click on the “Chart button” and begin building your chart. You can choose from line, bar, pie, trends, map, and other graph options.

On your spreadsheet, select the data you want to include in your chart. Or, you can do that under the “Start” tab once you’ve opened the Chart box.  Google Docs will recommend a chart for your first, but if you decide that is not what you want, you can move on to the “Charts” tab and select another option.  (Google Docs will even let you know if a certain chart is not possible with the data you provided). You’ll be able to preview the chart once you’ve made a selection. Create the title and other labels for your chart in the the “Customize” tab.

When you’re happy with the chart you built, click on “Insert” and it will appear on top of your spreadsheet.

It’s that easy!

For more instructions, read it from Google themselves.

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