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VBA Training Courses and Workshops

VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) is a rich programming language. Because it is so comprehensive there is a lot to learn. Making the step from recording macros to editing them and to writing code from scratch will take considerable time and effort if you are trying to teach yourself VBA.

Taking some training in VBA can get you productive much sooner than if you slave away on your own, even if you have the time to do so.

When you take a course or workshop, DMW shows you the VBA upon which you need to concentrate in order to achieve the programming relevant to your own work.


Course Duration

One day may suit someone already programming and wanting to fill specific gaps in their knowledge. Perhaps he or she may have recorded some macros and set about understanding the code with a view to modifying and adapting it.

Two days is average for anyone wanting a lead into VBA and structured programming for the first time.

DMW occasionally runs long VBA courses lasting a week or so. These are rare. They come out of requests from clients for the training of people who are to be programmers. For this sort of training the course content is comprehensive.

Workshops come into their own for individuals, or small groups, wanting to brush up on very specific applications of VBA. Usually these people have been tasked with developing a business tool using Microsoft Excel or a databse using Microsoft Access.


Course Content

In arranging training, the DMW approach is to ask you:

“What are the ways in which we might use VBA to automate processes that you perform manually and repetitively at the moment?”

With your list of ways in front of us, we agree a set of topics to be covered by the training.

If you have no definite view on for what you might use VBA, then Excel VBA and Access VBA have lists of topics covered in basic introductory courses, which you may find as useful guides.

To receive a recommendation of the topics to be covered in your training, please let DMW know to what use you think you will put VBA to your advantage.


Topics Common to All Training

There are topics that are covered in all courses: use of variables; conditional programming; looping and branching; functions and procedures; capturing user input; program structure and flow; documentation;

And DMW will always cover the topic of error handling. Without error handling there is always the risk that your VBA may cast users of your macros out into a hell of incomprehensible error messages and crashed programs.


The Nature of VBA

All the programs within Microsoft Office come with VBA. Using VBA we can make things happen within Excel, say, or we can make Excel talk to Access, Word and so on.

There are bits of VBA that are common to all the Office programs. For instance, if in Access, Excel, PowerPoint, Project or Word you need to pop up a message like this—

VBA message box

You would use this VBA code—

MsgBox "Preview before printing?",vbYesNoCancel,"Reporting"

In addition to the common elements of VBA, each individual application has its own VBA specific to the sorts of things for which you would use it.

For example, if you want to address cells in a spreadsheet, then use the VBA specific to Excel.

As long as you have Excel you can address those cells from within all the other programs of Microsoft Office on you computer.

These are examples of using VBA to make one Office app interact with another:

  • Word to perform a mailmerge using names and address stored in your Access contacts database
  • Your Access database to use Outlook to e-mail everyone who has indicated they would like to receive your newsletter
  • To output data from an Access table or query datasheet into Excel
  • Excel to display charts and pivot tables of data stored in your Access database.

Resources on the Web

The web is a vital resource for programmers. You can pick up tips; find chunks of code that may be directly applicable to the program you are writing; or post a message asking for help—there always seems to be someone to float a good idea back to you.

Since the web has so much on VBA it can be hard to locate amongst your search engine's results the best links to go for. During training, DMW will offer its view on how to use the web in support of your VBA efforts.

On its companion website, www.consultdmw.com, DMW is building up a repository of VBA code that you might find useful.


VBA Training in the UK and Beyond

Based near Tonbridge in Kent, DMW is well placed to provide courses and workshops throughout Kent, Surrey, Sussex and London.

For two-day and longer courses DMW travels throughout the UK. In a couple of instances has supplied training in continental Europe.

“Measuring programming progress by lines of code is like measuring aircraft building progress by weight.”

Bill Gates