How do I color code my Excel download report?


There is an error in the color encoding in most versions of Microsoft Excel 2013, and perhaps other versions and programs as well, whereby only some of the status cells are properly color coded. We have not been able to find a way to fix this problem, but you can color code the spreadsheet yourself fairly quickly by following the instructions below.

The color coding is supposed to work as follows:

  • "Mastered" is supposed to be coded green (RGB 0,128,0).
  • "Needs Review" is supposed to be coded yellow (RGB 255,255,0).
  • "Not Ready" is supposed to be coded red (RGB 255,0,0).
  • "mastered?" is supposed to be coded light gray (RGB 217,217,217).

If you need these cells to be color coded for the whole table, first select the entire table (upper left-hand corner is a shortcut), then click on "Conditional Formatting". followed by "New rule..."

You will need to specify the color-coding conditions for each status in turn. A new dialog will appear. Select "Format only cells that contain..."  Navigate to the selection pane below, and change "Cell value" to "Specific text".

In the text box to the right, type in the text for the status you are formatting (e.g., "Mastered", or "Needs Review", etc).

Click the "Format" button and choose the color you want. You can match the colors by using the RGB designations shown here, or create your own color combinations. Save each dialog to close, and you should see the spreadsheet get color-coded for that field appropriately. You will need to repeat this process for each field, as necessary.

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