Change the case of text in Excel

By Kelly L. Williams, CPA, Ph.D.

Q. I receive customer names from my clients in all different cases. Is there a way to organize the case of all customer names consistently?

A. You can change the case of a text string in Excel by using LOWER, UPPER, and PROPER, and they are all so simple to use. You can download an Excel workbook and access an accompanying video at the end of this article.

Note that the content that follows is based on Microsoft Excel 365 for PCs. Other versions of Excel may work differently.

Each of these three functions only contains one argument, Text. This is simply the cell(s) that contains the text string(s) where this case should be changed. LOWER would be used when you want to change the case of text in Excel to all lowercase, UPPER when you want to change the case of the text to all uppercase, and PROPER when you want the first letter of each word to be uppercase and the other letters to be lowercase. See the screenshot below for names where we will change the case.

text-case-1

We will change the case of the names that appear in column A to all lowercase in column C by using the LOWER function. Click in cell C2 and enter =LOWER(A2). Because this is formatted as a table, the whole column will automatically populate. If your data is not in a table, just copy your formula down or double-click the green box in the bottom right corner of cell C2.

Next, we will change the case of the names that appear in column E to all uppercase in column G by using the UPPER function. Click in G2 and enter =UPPER(E2). Lastly, we will change the case of the names in column I to the proper case in column K by using the PROPER function. Click in K2 and enter =PROPER(I2). See the screenshot below for the newly formatted names.

text-case-2

About the author

Kelly L. Williams, CPA, Ph.D., MBA, is an associate professor of accounting at the Jones College of Business at Middle Tennessee State University.


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