Information Commons workshops are designed to help students, staff and faculty to become more productive and work smarter and more efficiently to achieve goals and enhance performance. The workshops are totally interactive, being taught in a computer class room, where each participant sits at a computer and follows along with the instructor through a series of step-by-step exercises. Follow-up tutoring support is available. Below is an invitation to attend a wide range of free workshops which are open to all UCSD students, faculty and staff.


This Page Describes the Workshops that Comprise
Library Information Commons'
Computer Education Program.

 Please Check the Following Link for Current Schedules.

See Biomedical Library Workshops

The Information Commons workshops are listed below with a description of each.
Most of them have links to the workbooks and exercises which can give
you a preview of the course content. Please feel free to peruse
them and try out the step-by-step exercises.

Information  Commons Computer Workshops


Basic Excel 101

  Getting the Most from Excel - This workshop is designed for those who have either never used Excel or who have learned to use a few basic functions but don’t really know much about it. Here we teach the essentials, the things you need to know in order to broaden your understanding of Excel and begin to develop the skills necessary to become a competent user. Topics Covered: Setting up a spreadsheets, Entering Data, Formatting Cells, Page Views, How to Print, Cell Referencing, Calculating Spreadsheets, Introduction to Formulas, Paste Special.and Auto Data Fill.  Comes with 28-page manual/workbook.




Intermediate Excel 201

Discovering the Underlying Power of Excel ~ This workshop assumes that you have either taken the basic Excel workshop or that you are familiar with the basic Excel functions. Here we broaden your knowledge of Excel and teach you new skills that help you work smarter and more quickly using the powerful functions that come with this program. Topics Covered: Creating and Enhancing Charts and Graphs, Cell Styles and Themes, Understanding Cell Values, Auto Sorting and Filters, Text-to-Columns, Concatenation and Special Pasting, Naming Ranges, and Pasting Special Functions.  Comes with 34-page manual/workbook.



Advanced Excel 301

Finding Answers ~ This advanced Excel workshop will show you the way to find answers in data and to communicate those answers to others in such a way that it is interesting, meaningful, and significant. We will also explore how you can quickly and easily develop summaries of large and complex spreadsheets in a matter of seconds. Topics Covered: Conditional Logic, Using If Statements, Conditional Formatting, Data Analysis, Setting up Data and Formulas, Data Tables, Scenario Manager, Goal Seeking, and Pivot Tables. Comes with 28-page manual/workbook.



Advanced Excel 401 

Automating Excel with Macros ~ The final workshop of the series teaches you how to record, read and write macros in Visual Basic (VBA), the types of functions that lend themselves to automation, and how to edit and troubleshoot VBA code. Every effort has been made to keep the workshop simple and easy to understand so that you can begin to automate your routine Excel functions and procedures competently and productively. Topics Covered: Creating VBA Sub Procedure Macros by Recording, Examining and Testing Macros, Understanding VBA Code, Reading and Writing Macros, Debugging Your Macro, Creating and Reading Comments in VBA Code, and Practicing with VBA Macros. Comes with 28-page manual/workbook.



Creating Killer Diagrams with Microsoft Visio

Microsoft Visio is a diagramming program designed to assist users in the creation and illustration of ideas, processes, and systems.  It is an easy-to-use tool that helps users visualize, explore, and communicate complex information. With Visio you can easily create flow charts, process diagrams, organization charts, floor plans, maps, brain storming diagrams, charts and graphs. This is a hands-on workshop during which you will learn the fundamentals of diagram creation and actually create diagrams based on your own departmental processes. It comes with a detailed workbook which will serve as an ongoing reference for creating diagrams in future.



Making Visio Diagrams Come Alive With Data

The addition of data into a diagram makes it more more meaningful and appealing and helps explain the significance of what is being described by the diagram. It is also a way of detecting where problems are occurring so as to alert those responsible to anomalies in the system. This workshop will show you how to import data and display it in many different formats, using lines, colors, icons and measurement tools to help the recipients of your diagram quickly and easily get the global and detailed picture of what your diagram is communicating.



Achieving Your Creative Best in Digital Photo Editing with

Discover your creative potential with this powerful photo editing program available to you in This free, easy-to-use, downloadable program can transform your photos and provide a fun and productive outlet for your creative skills. Bring along your own photos and edit them during class exercises.


Professional Desktop Publishing with Microsoft Publisher

Learn to create brochures, leaflets, booklets, calendars, etc. with this easy-to-use desktop publishing program. This is a hands-on class in which you will actually create sample media as you explore the range of possible media and publications available in this program. Includes 30-page manual/workbook.


Enhancing Communication With Adobe Acrobat 10 

Create, combine, and control Adobe PDF documents for easy, more secure distribution, collaboration, and organization. Acrobat 10.0 is versatile, easy-to-use and powerful. Learn and practice a wide range of functions and features in this interactive, hands-on workshop.


Creating Forms That Work with Adobe LiveCycle Designer 

Adobe LiveCycle Designer enables you to create, distribute and track sophisticated, interactive forms, and quickly collect and review data, providing you with complete control over every phase of data collection and analysis. This workshop is a sequel to the Adobe Acrobat workshop described above.


Creating Professional Charts and Graphs with Microsoft Excel

Sometimes seeing columns of figures on a spreadsheet doesn’t convey the essence of a situation or the trend or what’s really going on, and in these circumstances we need to be shown graphically what the figures mean. This is the job of charts and graphs.

In this two and a half hour workshop we will be taking you on a tour of the basics of creating a basic Excel chart through when to use each of the 73 types of charts in the Excel repertoire. We will go through each of the chart tools and show you how to enhance charts and fine-tune them so that they convey the right message for the right people.


Unleashing the Power of PowerPoint

Attend one or all of the workshops in this four-part series and learn how to design and format slides for maximum appeal. Discover how to use PowerPoint tools, graphics, video and sound, to grab attention and hold interest.

Power Beginnings

This workshop is for people who have limited experience with PowerPoint or want a firm grounding in the fundamentals. It covers developing a concept, making an outline in MS Word & importing it, plus editing the slides. It also covers the menu & toolbars, task panes, and differing views. If you want to get it right from the very beginning, this workshop is for you!

Power Enhancements

Learn to format your master slides and other techniques to visually enhance your presentation. Also covered are inserting and editing elements such as tables, charts, diagrams, sound, video, and animation. Experience using PowerPoint is necessary. Attendance at the previous session (Getting Started) is helpful but is not required.  



Break-Through Presentations

Learn the do’s and don’ts of presentation effectiveness and how to impress your audience with a well-timed balance of speech and visual communication. This workshop will help you prepare for and conduct great presentations from organizing, preparing, rehearsing, and delivering your presentation. Also covered are printing handouts and speaker notes, exporting your presentation to other applications and publishing it on the web.



Creating Killer Research Posters in PowerPoint

Learn to create well-designed, professional research posters. This workshop will give you a head start in designing and creating great looking posters that attract attention and accentuate the highlights of your research project. Save yourself time and effort by learning the shortcuts to creating killer posters.