What's a list?

A list is a customizable file you can use to store and organize data. In some ways it is similar to a database or spreadsheet, it has rows and columns that can hold multiple kinds of information which can be manipulated and displayed in a number of ways. The data can be imported into other lists and exported to an Excel spreadsheet. You can create views to display subsets of the list data​. List data can be displayed on your webpages. Forms for adding, updating, and viewing the list data can be customized using Microsoft Infopath.​ Once you've customized a list you can save it as a template to use again.

There are several different types of lists, but the type you'll use most is the Custom List so we'll focus on that for this tutorial. A custom list is a generic sort of list that can be customized to fit your needs.​

Create the List

Go to the Site Actions menu and select Add an app.

Createou're now taken to the "Your Apps" page. Three of the most commonly used templates are at the top of the page, all other templates listed below that. Select the template that you want and click Create.
Image of the SharePoint Create panel

From here you're taken to the overview of your site contents. Your new list will be easy to find, it's marked with the green "new!" graphic.
A blank list

Customize the List

The default view on creation shows you two columns, an attachment and Title, but we're going to add some more. In the ribbon menu at the top of the page under List Tools and on the List tab click the create column button.
create column button

A window pops up presenting you with options for the new column. At the top we have Name and Type. Name is - you guessed it - the name of the column. Next we choose what type of information is going to be stored in this column, SharePoint needs to know what kind of data it is so it can add the correct type of form element to the add/edit form associated with the list. Below that is additional Column Settings. The fields there change depending on what column type you choose.

column types


A view is a set of rules that specify what data from the list will display and how it will display. The default view is called "All Items", you can edit this view, and you can create more views.

the view buttons on the ribbon
  1. Current View - sets the current view
  2. Modify View - edit the current view
  3. Create View - Create a new view

Create/Modify View

How to modify or create a view (omit first step for modify)

  • Click the Create View button. Pick the view from the available options. Most of the time you'll pick Standard View.
  • The next screen presents you with all the different settings you can customize for your view. You can name it, select which columns display, sort order, filter, and more.
  • Click OK to save your changes.

RSS Feeds

Lists can have RSS feeds of their data. To edit your RSS settings go to the list settings, the button for that is on the right side of the List Tools - List ribbon menu.
list settings button
On the List settings page click on the RSS settings link under Communications.

RSS settings are similar to view settings. You can specify what columns display, order, and limits on how many items are included in the feed and how many days of items are included.

Delete a List​​​​​​​

There is a link to delete the list on the list settings page. When you click it you'll get prompted with the standard are you sure? type of alert box.

Quick Edit

Quick edit makes your list display like a spreadsheet. It can be very useful if you need to edit a lot of information in your list. The quick edit button is on the left end of the List Tools - List ribbon menu.

datasheet view controls


Anouncements are a premade list that organizes your announcements into a list for better functionality. The basic list has three fields that can be populated, which are title, body, and expiration date for the announcement.

Creating an Ann​ouncements List:​

  1. Once you are logged into the SharePoint, click on “Site Actions” in the upper l​eft hand corner and select “More Options…”

  2. Click on Announcements and title it. We’ll name the Calendar ‘Announcements’ in this tutorial. Once you’ve named your calendar, click on “Create”.
  3. Now you will be taken to the Announcements list. Here you will be able to add any announcements you need.

Adding a New An​nouncement:

  1. Click on “Add new announcement”.

  2. There should be a “Announcements – New Item” pop-up. This is where you can populate the Title, Body, and Expires fields. Once the fields are populated click save. You’ll see that the new announcement has been added to the list:

View/Edit Announce​ment:

  1. Under the “Title” column, click on the announcement you’d like to view/edit. A pop-up similar to the one below will appear:
  2. When you are done viewing, click close. Otherwise, if you’d like to edit the event, click on the “Edit Item” in the top left hand corner of the pop-up. The fields should now be editable. Make the necessary edits and click save when finished.

Deleting an Annou​​ncement:

  1. Check the checkbox correlating to the announcement that requires deleting.
    NOTE: You must hover over the row of the announcement for the checkbox to appear.
  2. In the ribbon, in the “List Tools” category, select the “Items” tab. You’ll see in the “Manage” category there is a “Delete Item” button. Select “Delete”. There will be a prompt for you to confirm the delete. By clicking OK, the item will be removed from the Announcements list.


Adding an​ Announcement List to a Page:

  1. Go to the page that you would like the announcements list on. Make sure you are logged in and in edit mode (Site Actions -> Edit Page)
  2. Decide which zone you would like to put the announcements in. In this tutorial, we’ll use the “Top” zone – click on “Add a Web Part” in the zone of your choice.
  3. The Web Parts Menu will open, and you can select your announcements web part and click “Add” located in the bottom right hand corner of the Web Parts Menu.
    Note: I named my announcements web part “Announcements”. If you named yours something else, it would be listed under that name.

  4. Your announcements list should now be successfully displayed in the “Top” zone of your page.

  5. Now edit your web part to change how your list appears. (Click the down arrow of the web part and Edit Web Part. See image below.) The main types that would affect your layout are “Toolbar Type” and “Chrome Type”. Play around with them until you get the desired look. ​Make sure to click on ‘OK’ to save the page when you are finished.