COUNTA is a function available in Microsoft Excel that is used during counting of the numbers in a series of cells. This function is implemented to calculate the number of cells that are not empty within a selected range. When you supply a set of values within cells that block is taken to be occupied. The number of cells that are occupied at that point of time is taken as a parameter in the COUNTA function. COUNTA ignores the number of empty cells within that range. When a cell is initially empty this function does not include it within its consideration. But later when the value is updated in the cells the total value is automatically updated. While using the function, you would have to select the cells where the values are to be entered. COUNTA is a function that is available in the statistical function category. This function is available in the drop down menu of the functions tab. The COUNTA function is one of the most used statistical functions. It has flexibility and can be used according to the requirements of your project. The values that are to be entered in this function have to be done by selecting the cells that contain some entered values. Empty cells are not considered even if they have been taken inside the selection range. For example, suppose we select from A1 to A7. Out of these selected cells if there are only 4 cells in which some numeric or text data has been entered then after we select the final result cell we would get a display value of 4. This means that the function is only considering cells with data. This function finds its use when there are numerous cells of heterogeneous entries. The sheets with the numeric values and the table headings along with their column headings can be counted with the COUNTA function.

The syntax of the COUNTA function is as follows:

COUNTA (value1, value2, value3,..)

The parameters that are used in this function include value1, value2, .. and so on. Value1 is the parameter that represents the value that you would want to calculate. Similarly more arguments can be added in this function. In this way the function can incorporate at most 255 arguments.

The values that are entered as the parameter of this COUNTA function can be different. They can be entered as the general selection. When we select a range of cells in our Excel sheet, most of the times we find there are vacant spaces in the sheet which have no actual contribution to the sheet. In such cases only the valuable part of the sheet can be adjudged by implementing the COUNTA function of MS Excel.

This function actually counts the number of data entries that have been made in the excel sheet. Only text or numerical entries are counted in this function. Suppose we enter the number of cells whose count has to be done. In such a case the number that is to be counted has to be entered into the parameters in the COUNTA function. Once you have selected the number of cells as the parameter values of the COUNTA function you have to select the final cell that would hold the counted values.

Once data has been entered into the sheet cells the user can easily understand and comprehend the number of vacant cells in the sheet. The value of the number of used cells is stored in another separate cell thereby allowing you to observe the result. The COUNTA function actually calculates any value that is entered in the cells. It in fact takes the error values also into consideration. It may so happen that we have been using a set of formulae in our spread sheet. But the COUNTA function does not judge the value that this returned by this function. If the result that a function within the spread sheet returns a value which has an empty string the COUNTA function would still count it as an occupied cell. This denotes that a COUNTA function is only able to comprehend the cells that have rewritten or some sort of value has been entered in such cells.

This function is available in all the versions of MS Excel including MS Excel 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011. It is used by Excel consultants and students alike. We hope you enjoyed the free Excel help article. There are more, please read as many as you wish, and come back often, looking for new ones.