Home > Articles > Home & Office Computing > Microsoft Applications

  • Print
  • + Share This
Like this article? We recommend

Forms are the first step along the road to customizing a database. You can enter or edit data in Table view, but a form allows more control over formatting and can combine fields from more than one table.

The example we create in the following steps can be used with either an imported or linked Excel worksheet:

  1. Click the Forms tab in your Access project window.

  2. Double-click Create Form By Using Wizard (see Figure 9).

  3. Figure 9Figure 9

  4. Click the double-arrow button to the right of the field names to add all fields. Click Next.

  5. Click Next to accept columnar layout.

  6. Select a style (or leave Standard selected). Click Next.

  7. Click the Modify the Form's Design radio button. Click Finish.

The wizard creates a default form with some fields much larger than they need to be (see Figure 10).

Figure 10Figure 10

Follow these steps to clean up the form and make it more attractive:

  1. Start by using the Select Objects tool on the toolbar, which should be active by default when you enter Form Design view. Select each field and drag the edges of the box to narrow the field and make it a single line.

  2. NOTE

    When you select a field, its label (at left) is also selected. This technique allows you to move the field and its label as a unit, but it doesn't prevent you from changing the size of the field by itself.

  3. Drag the sizing handle up and left until you have the size you want; then release the mouse button (see Figure 11). If you make a mistake, press Ctrl+Z to undo the last action.

  4. Figure 11Figure 11

  5. We're trying to save some room on this form, so continue resizing fields until each is small as possible while still displaying all the data in the field. If you accidentally make a field too small, you can resize it later. It doesn't matter if the field becomes too short to display the full field name.

  6. With the fields formatted shorter and on one line, they can be moved up and over to make the form more compact. You can click-and-drag the fields and labels, or select a field and use the arrow keys on the keyboard to nudge it up and over.

  7. TIP

    Using the keyboard gives you more control. Holding down the Ctrl key while nudging moves the field and label in smaller increments. You can also resize the field or label with the arrow keys by holding down the Shift key.

  8. To shrink the form to eliminate space that's no longer needed, drag up the divider labeled Form Footer, and drag the right side of the form to the left (see Figure 12).

  9. Figure 12Figure 12

  10. Drag the corner of the form design window up and to the left to shrink it to match the size of the form. You can preview the form at any time by selecting Form View from the main Access window (see Figure 13).

  11. Figure 13Figure 13

  12. To make the cell alignments match those of the original Excel worksheet, select a field and use the alignment buttons on the main Access toolbar. (In the inventory example, I would center the fields Asset Tag, Processor, Speed, RAM, and HD.)

  13. The date format should be abbreviated month and full year. Right-click the Installed field and select Properties (see Figure 14). Next to Format, replace the text with mmm-yyyy.

  14. Figure 14Figure 14

  15. Close the form window and save changes.

  16. Double-click the form name in the project window to open the form.

Using the Form

The finished form displays the records in the order in which they're displayed in the original Excel worksheet. The form window includes controls at the bottom for advancing one record at a time or moving to the first or last record. The button at far right inserts a new record at the end of the table (see Figure 15).

Figure 15Figure 15

To perform a simple sort on one field, click in the field; then use the menu to choose Records, Sort, Sort Ascending (or Sort Descending).

To filter out some of the records—for example, to view only CPU records—click through to the first record you want. Then use the menu to choose Records, Filter, Filter by Selection. Choose Filter Excluding Selection to do the reverse.

To sort or filter on multiple fields, select Filter, Advanced Filter/Sort.

In this example I want to view only records that are CPUs with a speed of less than 2 GHz. These two fields are filtered using the criteria selection. In addition, I want to sort on manufacturer and date installed (see Figure 16). Select Records, Apply Filter/Sort to view results; in this example, the result is 15 filtered records.

Select Records, Remove Filter/Sort to return to the default view.

Figure 16Figure 16

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020