When working within a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet, you may decide that you want to split data in one cell over two cells--or data in an entire column of cells over two columns. For example, you might have a list of children and their birth dates and want these data stored in separate cells. Dividing individual cells or whole columns in two in Microsoft Excel is easy, straightforward and will take you only a few minutes to complete.

Step 1.

Launch Microsoft Excel. Double-click the name of the document you want to edit on your hard drive to open it in Microsoft Excel.

Step 2.

Insert a blank column next to the cell or column of cells you want to split. Highlight your cell by clicking on it (or the whole column by clicking on the column heading) and hold down the "Alt," "I" and "C" keys at the same time to insert a new column.

Step 3.

Open the "Convert Text to Columns Wizard." In Excel 2003 and earlier versions, drop-down the "Data" menu and select "Convert Text Into Columns." In Excel 2007 and 2010, navigate to the "Data" tab and click the "Text to Columns" button.

Step 4.

Divide your cell or cells in two. Choose either "Delimited" or "Fixed Width," depending on whether or not a comma (or other character) or a space separates the data you want to split, respectively. Click "Next," keeping in mind that you'll need to enter whichever character you used to separate your data on the next screen if you selected "Delimited." Click "Finish." Your cell (or column) is now divided in two.


If you need to divide a cell horizontally, simply place your cursor where you want to split it and hold down the "Alt" and "Enter" keys at the same time.