How to Create a Totals Row in Access

Create a Totals row in two clicks. A Totals row allows you to see, at a quick glance, what the totals are for a given field within a table.

Totals rows apply an aggregate function to all values in the field and display the result in its own dedicated row.

You can use a Totals row to calculate the sum of all values, an average of the values, a count of the records in the table, minimum value, maximum value, standard deviation (how widely values are dispersed from an average value (a mean)), and variance (statistical variance of all values in the column).

  1. Screenshot of a MS Access 2016 table

    Select the Totals Option

    Open the table in Datasheet View and click Totals in the Ribbon (from the Home tab).

    A new row will be appended to the table with the word Total in the first column.

    In this screenshot, I scrolled to the bottom of the table. However, this is not necessary. Access displays the Totals row as a fixed row, regardless of where the scroll position is.

  2. Screenshot of selecting a the SUM function

    Select which Field and Function

    In the new Total row, click in the field you want the total to be applied to.

    Select the desired function from the drop-down list.

    In this example, we apply a Sum function to the Population field. This will add up the population of all countries, and the total will appear in our new totals row.

    The available functions depend on the data type. For example, if you try to add a Totals row to a text field, you'll only be able to select Count (for counting up the rows).

  3. Screenshot of the new totals row

    Your Totals Row

    Access will automatically generate the total when you select the desired option.

Save the Changes

If you want the Totals row to be permanent, be sure to save the changes you just made to the table.

Here, we will close the table and re-open it again. That way we can test it to make sure the changes will still be there when we re-open the table.

  1. Screenshot of saving the table

    Close the Table

    Close the table (using the little X icon).

    Click Yes at the prompt.

  2. Screenshot of the totals row

    Open the Table and See the Totals

    Open the table again, and you will see the Totals row is still there.

    Notice that the Totals row is fixed to the bottom of the table. So you don't have to scroll down to see the Totals row. You can still see it even as you scroll up and down.

You don't actually need to close the table. I just did that to demonsrate how the table will look when you open it again.

You can save the table using the usual methods if you prefer (eg, by right-clicking on the table's tab and selecting Save).

There's nothing to stop you from creating a temporary Totals row. You can do this simply by not saving the changes. You could do this if you ever wanted to do a quick total without committing it to the database.