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Large with criteria

Analyzing data often requires to find the largest value. Sometimes we need to extract the largest value based on a criteria. Excel offers a great solution to find the largest value with criteria. The LARGE and IF functions help us to find the largest value with criteria. In this tutorial, we will learn how to find the largest value with criteria in Excel.

Figure 1. Example of How to Use Large with Criteria in Excel

Generic Formula


Here, we use the functions LARGE and IF. LARGE retrieves the “nth” largest value from a numeric data. The IF function here performs a logical test on the range to see if they fulfil the criteria. The values that satisfy the criteria returns those values. The ones that does not satisfy the condition returns FALSE. This array is returned inside the LARGE function. We hardcode the number k for the kth value. This returns the kth largest number.

Setting up Data

The following example uses a student information database. Column A, B and C has the names, ids and ages

Figure 2. The Sample Data

To find out the second highest age in grade 4, we need to

  • Go to cell E5.
  • Assign the formula =LARGE(IF(B2:B8=”Grade 4”,C2:C8),2) to E5.
  • Press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to apply it as an array formula.

Figure 3. Applying the Formula

This will show the second highest age, which is 8.


We can find the largest value based on multiple criteria as well. To do that we need to extend the formula based on boolean logic. The formula would have the syntax {=LARGE(IF((criteria 1)*(criteria 2),value),n)}. This will find the nth largest value based on multiple criteria.

Most of the time, the problem you will need to solve will be more complex than a simple application of a formula or function. If you want to save hours of research and frustration, try our live Excelchat service! Our Excel Experts are available 24/7 to answer any Excel question you may have. We guarantee a connection within 30 seconds and a customized solution within 20 minutes.

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Another blog reader asked this question today on Excelchat:
Here are some problems that our users have asked and received explanations on

i need to use sumifs for multiple criteria and a date range for a very large dataset
Solved by Z. U. in 28 mins
I use the database functions a lot for large tables of data. It's a real pain with the way the criteria works as its generally 2 rows. Is there a way around having to add a space row after each d formula to deal with criteria.
Solved by G. D. in 19 mins
need an example of Average(large) and ifs combined, my formula isn't using the criteria answer to average(large), it's averaging the entire data once it was TRUE TRUE help please
Solved by V. J. in 28 mins

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