To use a function, you must start with an equal sign, then reference the function by its name: IF. Next, inside a set of parentheses, you need to provide three arguments:

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General IF function syntax is: =IF(condition, conditionTrueValue, conditionFalseValue) 


To use a function, you must start with an equal sign, then reference the function by its name: IF. Next, inside a set of parentheses, you need to provide three arguments: 

(1) the condition that should be evaluated; 

(2) the value to use if the condition evaluates to true; and 

(3) the value to use if the condition evaluates to false.


The condition argument that is used in the IF function generally contains a comparison operator like: greater than (>), less than (<), or not equal to (< >). Review the full list of comparison operators on page 237 of the Microsoft Excel 2019 Inside Out textbook.


Other functions (like IFS, SWITCH, and CHOOSE) perform similar operations, but generally have a simplified syntax. The IFS function can evaluate multiple conditions without the need to nest them inside the IF function. The SWITCH function can evaluate an expression against a list of possible values. The CHOOSE function evaluates an expression and returns a corresponding value from a list. 


Lookup functions can also be used to find values based on the relationship between locations. For example, the VLOOKUP function looks for a value within the leftmost column of a range, and returns a value from the same row, but from whichever column has been specified in the function. Similarly, the HLOOKUP function, looks for a value within the top row of a range, and returns a value in the same column, but from whichever row has been specified in the function.



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