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I have a lab report due tomorrow and I am supposed to plot a data set given to me by the professor. The biology laboratory guidelines tell me to have no more than 5 tick marks on the graphs vertical axis. However the data plot, when I auto-create graph in Excel, is making a vertical axis with 8 ticks. How do I change the maximum number of ticks on the graph?

Note: I have tried changing the scale of the graph but that has left me with the same problem of too many major ticks on the graph.

I am a fairly inexperienced Excel user so any help as quickly as possible would be greatly appreciated.

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How many rows/columns of data do you have? – ChrisF Jan 25 '10 at 21:55
  1. Right-click on the axis whose tick marks you want to change. Excel displays a Context menu for the axis.
  2. Choose Format Axis from the Context menu. (If there is no Format Axis choice, then you did not right-click on an axis in step 1). Excel displays the Format Axis dialog box.
  3. Make sure the Axis Options tab is selected.
  4. To the right of Major Unit, click Fixed and specify a multiple at which you want the major tick marks to appear. (for instance 2)
  5. To the right of Minor Unit, click Fixed and specify a multiple at which you want the minor tick marks to appear. (This step is optional)
  6. Click on OK.
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