The first week's videos are aimed specifically at learners with no prior experience with Excel. If that describes you, this week you will acquire all the basic Excel skills and vocabulary you need to succeed with the later weeks' more advanced material. The way we recommend learning this material most effectively is to have your copy of Excel open to the appropriate Excel template spreadsheet for each video as you watch. The template is the one that is not completely filled in yet. Follow along, stopping and starting the video when necessary so that you can fill in the appropriate Excel cells yourself in your own template. You should be able to generate the same right answers that are shown in the video as you go along. If anything is unclear, go back and try to get your spreadsheet to match the example before you go on to the next video. This approach is the recommended learning method for the entire course. Every core concept in a video has a corresponding Excel spreadsheet where that concept is implemented in a practical way. If possible watch each video with the relevant Excel spreadsheet open at the same time, and see if you can get the same answers as I do for yourself simply using the Excel template and entering some additional data or functions. If you read the Excel functions you will see that they implement exactly the formulas in the videos. Of course, you may also need to write some additional functions in Excel or move cells around, add cells, etc., in order to answer the more complicated quiz questions. If you already have all the basic Excel knowledge described below, you can skip some or all of this weeks lesson and go straight to the quiz. It would be best not to skip the videos unless you're already familiar with defining cell locations, the use of relative and absolute references and formulas, Excel's auto-fill feature, formatting cells for numbers, currency, and percentages. Charting results using scatter plots, proper syntax, and order of operations for arithmetic in Excel. Common functions on a single number, such as functions using exponents, logs, pi, and random numbers. Excel functions on groups of numbers such as average, maximum, and groups of ordered pairs such as correlation and slope, graphing linear regressions and displaying descriptive statistics about best fit lines. The Excel data sort function, and setting up and answering problems using the solver plug-in. The quiz has questions that you should answer in Excel in order to test your basic Excel competency. Getting the right answer, but using a different tool than Excel, is not recommended. Because, later on you will need to be able to read Excel functions in order to benefit from the Excel spread sheet examples and data sets that supplement each video and are designed to make it easier to understand the more advanced course material. Of course, if you pass the quiz now and realize later that you'd like to review an Excel skill, you can always come back and watch the appropriate video later. All demonstrations of problems and solutions in this course are done with Microsoft Excel for Mac Version 14.5.4. Be aware that many minor details, such as where certain menus and commands are located, will vary between different versions of Excel. So, things may look quite different on your computer than they do in the videos. However, it's easy to get help. Check the Excel version number you have and look up online how to use the same functionality in your version. All the problems for this course should be solvable by any version of Excel, so long as it includes the Solver plug-in. To the best of my knowledge that includes all versions of Excel released since 2007. You will not need the Data Analysis Tool Pack, which does not work with any Mac versions of Excel before Excel 2016. After taking this course, you will be able to apply advanced data exploration methods, models, and information theory concepts and other approaches to evaluating model effectiveness. You will be able to quantify the uncertainty in a situation before you analyse the available data, the uncertainty afterwards, and the reduction in uncertainty or information gained, achieved by the combination of the data plus your model. Our goal is to make all the new ideas introduced in this course, as accessible as possible. We do this by working through examples of each type of problem including full sample answers in Excel, rather than using more so-called advanced tools, such as R or MATLAB. Excel is already the world's most widely used, and it's one of the easiest-to-master business data processing tools. After this course, you will have applied many different Excel templates to many different practical problems. My students report that they can often reuse these templates later, with only minor modifications on real world problems. Of course, if you prefer to solve course problems in R or MATLAB or some other tool, you won't have the advantage of the Excel spreadsheets I've created for you, but that is of course allowed. Use the course in the way that works best for you, and good luck.