How to expand and collapse grouped columns using keyboard shortcuts

Grouped columns and rows (sometimes called Outline Data) are an alternative for hiding and showing data without using the Hide and Unhide function. Both options are great for organizing and de-cluttering worksheets which have a lot of data on display. Did you know that you can expand and collapse grouped columns using keyboard shortcuts? Follow the steps below to see how.

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You are welcome to download the workbook to practice this exercise.

Applies To: Microsoft® Excel® 2010 and 2013

1. Open the exercise workbook. You will see that three columns (B, C and D) are grouped together.


2. Select any cell in those three columns, then press ‘ALT’, ‘A’, ‘H’.


The grouped rows are now in a collapsed view.

3. In order to expand the selection, you must select a cell in the same column as the group symbol (in this case, column E).


4. Press ‘ALT’, ‘A’, ‘J’.


The grouped columns are now expanded.