Order of Algebraic Operations
Date: 25 May 1995 18:22:51 -0400 From: Richard Seguin Subject: Algebraic Operations I seem to have a problem with these types of questions. I don't really know how to take them apart and solve them. Here are two I would like you to help me with please. 1) 9*4-7*5+6*7-10 ---------------- = ? 6/6+7*3-4*3-9 2) 2+2*3-(2/2)*(4-3)+1 = ? I can't figure out where I cut it in half. PLEASE HELP!
Date: 26 May 1995 19:07:11 -0400 From: Dr. Ken Subject: Algebraic Operations > 1) 9*4-7*5+6*7-10 > ---------------- > 6/6+7*3-4*3-9 Okay! The first thing you should realize about this problem is that no matter what you do, you should evaluate the top of the big fraction and the bottom of the big fraction separately, and then divide the two answers you get. So really what you should do is simplify the top, simplify the bottom, and then do the division. Sound good? When we simplify the top, (the top is 9*4-7*5+6*7-10) we have to remember the order of operations. We do all the * and / before we do any + and -. So if we go through and take care of all the * and / in the top, we get 36 - 35 + 42 - 10 in the top. Right? Can you simplify this? Now you've got to do the same thing with the bottom (the bottom is 6/6+7*3-4*3-9). Do the * and / first, and then just go through and do the addition and subtraction. Then you'll just have a number in the top, a number in the bottom, and you'll divide them. > 2) 2+2*3-(2/2)*(4-3)+1 In this problem, look at the parentheses (). Whenever you see parentheses, you can do whatever math is inside them first, and then once that's done you can take another look at the problem. So if we do the math that's inside those parentheses, we get 2+2*3-1*1+1. Now we do the same thing we did above, do all the * and / first, and then all the + and -. If you want to check your answers, or you need more help on the problems, let us know! -Ken "Dr." Math
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