Represent

Pronunciation: /ˌrɛ prɪˈzɛnt/ ?

To represent something means using a symbol to stand for something else. In math, we use various characters to stand for something else. Here is a table of common representations in math:

RepresentationWhat it means
πThis represents the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter.
A variableA variable represents a quantity which is unknown or can change (can vary).
9/3An improper fraction can be a representation of a whole number. In this case, 9/3 is the same as the whole number 3.
arbitrary graphA graph can be used to represent a function
Year199519961997
Sales103201045010210
A table can be used to represent a function.

We use representations in algebra so the same symbol always means the same thing, and so we can write about a concept without a lot of words.

More Information

  • McAdams, David. Model. allmathwords.org. Life is a Story Problem LLC. 2009-03-12. http://www.allmathwords.org/article.aspx?lang=en&id=Mathematical%20Model.

Educator Resources

  • Representation. NASA LaRC Office of Education. 2010-02-18. http://www.archive.org/details/NasaConnect-Ve-Representation.

Cite this article as:


Represent. 2007-07-12. All Math Words Encyclopedia. Life is a Story Problem LLC. http://www.allmathwords.org/en/r/represent.html.

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2007-07-12: Initial version (McAdams, David.)

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