Key Skills > Data Validation

Data Validation Topics on Contextures

Use the Excel data validation feature to create drop down lists on a worksheet. Or, use data validation rules to control what can be entered into worksheet cells.

list of options for drop down

Author: Debra Dalgleish

Data Validation Tutorials

These tutorials show how to use Excel data validation drop down lists, and how to set data validation rules.

1 -- Dependent Drop Down Lists -- Easy steps for Excel dependent drop down list. Conditional data validation based on other cell, Region/City. Videos, written steps, get free Excel file

2 -- Excel Drop Down Lists -- Easy steps to make a basic drop down list with Excel data validation. Show list of valid entries, reduce data entry errors. Videos, written notes, free workbook

3 -- Drop Down - Select Multiple Items -- How to select multiple items from Excel Data Validation drop down list, all in one cell. Short videos, written steps, free Excel workbook to download

4 -- Data Validation Tips and Troubleshooting -- How to fix Excel data validation problems. Drop down not working, blank selected, not showing all data. Videos, written steps, data validation troubleshooting

list of options for drop down

Data Validation Videos

Here's one of my latest Excel data validation videos, and almost all of my data validation tutorial pages include a video too.

To create a drop down list in Excel, you can name a list of items, based on a named Excel table. Then, use that list as the source for the Data Validation drop down list. There are written steps, and sample file on the Excel Drop Down Lists page.

Data Validation - Sample Files

Here are the download links for a couple of my latest data validation sample workbooks, and most of the tutorial pages include a sample file too.

More Workbooks: For even more data validation sample files, go to the Excel Sample Files page, and scroll down to the Data Validation section.


Add Headings in Drop Down List -- Add single-letter headings in a long list of items, so it's easier to navigate in the list.
Excel File: Headings in Drop Down List (has macros)


Show List of All Matching Items-- Select Region name from a data validation drop down list. Worksheet table shows list of employees from the selected region, using formulas 
Excel File:
List All Matching Items (no macros)

More Excel Topics

Data Validation | Pivot Tables | Formulas | Macros | Format | Charts | Filters


Last updated: November 9, 2022 2:20 PM