How To Select A Random Item From A List

2017-11-28

Example

=INDEX(B3:B6,RANDBETWEEN(1,ROWS(B3:B6)))

Generic Formula

=INDEX(List,RANDBETWEEN(1,ROWS(List)))

List – This is the list of items to select from.

What It Does

This formula will return a random selection from a given list with each item in the list having an equal probability of being selected.

How It Works

ROWS(List) will return the number of rows in the List. In our example there are 4 rows in the list.

RANDBETWEEN(1,4) will return a random integer number between 1 and 4 where each number has an equal probability of being selected. This number is then used as the row index to return an item in the list.

INDEX(List,N) will return the item in row N of the List. In our example N will be a random number between 1 and 4.

About the Author

John MacDougall

John MacDougall

John is a Microsoft MVP and freelance consultant and trainer specializing in Excel, Power BI, Power Automate, Power Apps and SharePoint. You can find other interesting articles from John on his blog or YouTube channel.

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