Sorting Records

In Access 2003 sorting records may seem confusing at first. This free lesson offers step-by-step instructions.

Sorting records to find information

Sorting is one method that helps you find information quickly and easily in a database. Records can be sorted in ascending order (A-Z) and descending order (Z-A). You can sort by zip code, last name, first name, company, or contact type (such as family, friend, or relative). You can even sort by contact type and then by last name within each contact type.

It's easiest to see the results of a sort if you work in Datasheet view.

To sort records:

  • Open the desired form or table, such as the Contacts table.
  • Choose ViewDatasheet View from the menu bar if Datasheet view is not already displayed.

    Records Shown in Datasheet View
  • Click anywhere in the column you want to sort by, such as Last Name.
  • Click the Ascending or Descending button on the toolbar (or choose RecordsSortSort Ascending or Sort Descending from the menu bar).

    Records Sorted in Descending Order by Last Name

To sort by Form view, switch to Form view, select the field you want to sort by, and click the Sort button on the toolbar. To see the results, use the status area to move through the records.