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How To Use Power BI DAX

What is DAX and how to use it in Power BI?

December 06, 2019

What is DAX and how to use it in Power BI?

We all know that Power BI is an incredibly powerful and interactive data visualisation tool.  Regular users of Power BI often like to take their skills and modelling abilities to the next level by learning how to write DAX on their own, which stands for Data Analysis Expressions.  DAX is the formula language used in Power BI and is also used in other Microsoft programs such as Power Pivot.  Read on for a quick lesson into what DAX is and how you can use within Power BI.

What is DAX?

DAX is a functional programming language, meaning the full executed code is contained inside a function.  It’s designed to work with tables, so the language has only two primary data types:  Numeric (includes integers, decimals and currency), and Other (includes strings and binary objects).  Because DAX uses operator overloading, it means users can mix data types in their calculations and their results will change automatically based on what type of data was used.

DAX calculations and functions

There are two primary calculations you can create using DAX, which are calculated columns and calculated measures.

Calculated columns are useful when you want to slice or filter on the value, or when you want a calculation for every row in your table.  On the other hand, calculated measures are useful when you want to calculate a percentage or ratio or you need complex aggregations.

There are many functions available within DAX to help you shape, form and analyse your data.  The functions within DAX are often grouped into categories such as aggregation functions, counting functions, logical functions, information functions, text functions and date functions.

Learning to write DAX functions and understand expressions is key for users who want to build on their data analysis skills.  With even a one-day course, users can learn to create complex expressions, manage and create DAX and learn methods to optimise their expressions.

To learn more about DAX and how to best use it for your business, you can check out our courses here.

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Thank you Michael. You are Very supportive, I hope with your little help I will be able to put my BI training to real use Best Regards, -Power BI DAX Sydney
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Lot of content, Michael was easy to follow and very helpful. I have lots to take back to work an d practice. I note that we didn't go through the book as it is laid out and there are probably a lot of exercises that we didn't get time to do. I expect that this will need to be done in our own time later. I think this course can be stretched over 2 days. -Power BI DAX Sydney
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Very useful course and excellent tutor. Keen to know more about DAX Studio. -Power BI DAX Sydney
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Great trainer, really engaging which is difficult in a virtual environment. Covered a lot in one day, and looking forward to the next course. -Power BI Beginner Adelaide
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Jagg explained everything clearly and in a very logical order which helped with understanding the intricacies and end result of the package. He handled the hybrid teaching environment (online and face to face) very well. -Power BI Beginner Adelaide
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Well paced, easy to follow, engaging presentation -Power BI Beginner Adelaide
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This course was very informative for someone who is very familiar with Excel and self-taught but wanting to fill in the gaps and expand their knowledge even more. Steven was a brilliant trainer - he spoke clearly and slowly (which really helps when doing this course online) and made sure that everyone in the session was following each step. And his virtual chocolate frogs were much appreciated! Thank you so much! -Excel Advanced Brisbane
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Good Introduction to advance features, would like to extend to the next level which is probably more aligned to the specialist courses. Key Goals achieved - 7 efficiency options in modelling identified. -Excel Advanced Brisbane
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Stephen was easy to follow and doing it on line was a great experience. -Excel Advanced Brisbane
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Steven was a fantastic teacher - explained things clearly and checked in. His also took the time to find out what we do for work and try to tailor what we focused on based on those needs or highlight when what we were learning may be especialy applicable to certain people. The course is great with the resources to play with - i got a lot out of it Virutal chocolate frogs for Steven! -Excel Advanced Brisbane
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