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### Missing Terms

```
Date: Mon, 19 Dec 1994 18:43:30 AST
From: Richard Seguin

Hello again. In our math book, we have a question like this:

Find the missing terms:

?(?-3)=5w-15   <----- What I don't understand is how do you get the
answer? And what is it looking exactly for?
```

```
Date: Mon, 19 Dec 1994 18:08:24 +0000
From: Elizabeth Weber

Hello!

This is a funny sort of problem.  What makes it so confusing is
that there are two '?'s, which stand for two different things.

Let's make the problem a little more clear:  let's call ?(?-3)
'a(b-3)'.  When we multiply ?(?-3) out, we're going to get something
of the form ab-a*3.

5w-15, then, is of the form ab-a*3.

Can you see what the values of a and b must be, now?

-Elizabeth, a math doctor
```
Associated Topics:
Middle School Equations

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