Simplify

Pronunciation: /ˈsɪm pləˌfaɪ/ Explain

To simplify is to convert to a simpler form. When simplifying an expression, we change it or convert it to a simpler form. The table in figure 1 shows an example of simplification.

ExpressionRule Being Used
3(x+2)-(3x-3)+(4-x)
3x+6-(3x-3)+(4-x)Distributive property of multiplication over addition and subtraction.
3x+6-3x+3+(4-x)Distributive property of multiplication over addition and subtraction.
3x+6-3x+3+4-xDistributive property of multiplication over addition and subtraction.
3x-3x+6+3+4-xCommutative property of addition.
3x-3x+6+3-x+4Commutative property of addition.
3x-3x+6-x+3+4Commutative property of addition.
3x-3x-x+6+3+4Commutative property of addition.
3x-3x-x+6+3+4Commutative property of addition.
-x+13Combining like terms.

Figure 1: Table showing simplification of 3(x+2)-(3x-3)+(4-x).

References

  1. Bettinger, Alvin K. and Englund, John A.. Algebra and Trigonometry. pg 17-21. www.archive.org. International Textbook Company. January 1963. Last Accessed 1/12/2010. http://www.archive.org/stream/algebraandtrigon033520mbp#page/n18/mode/1up. Buy the book

Cite this article as:

McAdams, David E. Simplify. 5/5/2011. All Math Words Encyclopedia. Life is a Story Problem LLC. http://www.allmathwords.org/en/s/simplify.html.

Revision History

9/14/2008: Added 'More Information'. (McAdams, David E.)
7/12/2007: Initial version. (McAdams, David E.)

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