Term

Pronunciation: /tɜrm/ ?

A term is a part of an expression that is separated from other terms by addition or subtraction. A term consists of a coefficient and zero or more variables.

the term 3a^2b, of which 3 is the coefficient and a^2b is the variables

Terms are enumerated (counted) from left to right.

the expression '3xy^3+x^2y+y' where '3xy^3' is the first term, 'x^2y' is the second term and 'y' is the third term.

Constant Term

A constant term in an expression is a term without any variables. In the expression 3x2+5x-2, the constant term is -2.

Like Terms

Two terms are like terms if they have the same variable(s) and each variable has the same exponent. 3x2 is like 5x2 because the variable x is both, and the exponent of x is 2 in both.

check mark Understanding Check

  1. Are the terms 2b and 0.5b like terms?
    Check boxYes.
    Check boxNo.
  2. Are the terms 3y2 and 3y3 like terms?
    Check boxYes.
    Check boxNo.
  3. Are the terms 3y and 3 like terms?
    Check boxYes.
    Check boxNo.
  4. Are the terms 2 and 7 like terms?
    Check boxYes.
    Check boxNo.
  5. Are the terms xy and 12xy like terms?
    Check boxYes.
    Check boxNo.
  6. Are the terms 2xy2 and 4xy like terms?
    Check boxYes.
    Check boxNo.

Cite this article as:


Term. 2009-01-30. All Math Words Encyclopedia. Life is a Story Problem LLC. http://www.allmathwords.org/en/t/term.html.

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Revision History


2009-01-30: Added constant term (McAdams, David.)
2008-11-27: Added parts of a term (McAdams, David.)
2008-05-20: Added enumeration of terms, like terms, and 'More Information' (McAdams, David.)
2007-07-11: Initial version (McAdams, David.)

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