Ways & How

how to do algebra step by step

how to do algebra step by step

For some students, studying complex numbers or algebra in particular can be messy business. On the other hand, some students simply study the right approach and maintain a positive attitude, which yields a more enjoyable experience with mathematics. Mathematics is one of the most-feared subjects in schools; however, with some dedication, patience and practice, you can learn how to do algebra step by step. Fast-growing companies today are constantly looking for people that have exceptional skills, such as smart decision-making, strategy formulation and quick reasoning. When working with algebra, you can end up sharpening each of these skills and open more opportunities for yourself. Here is how:

  1. Review your elementary arithmetic operations. Even if you already know how to add, subtract, multiply and divide you, still need to review the basic rules. These arithmetic principles are, in one way or the other, still applicable as you learn algebra. You can buy a pre-algebra textbook for further reference.

  2. Study the rule on “like terms” and variables.

    strong> Before you can solve a given equation, you have to learn how to select “like terms” and group them together. In addition, learn how to separate the variables involved. For example, let us say in the equation 4y + 6y + 12 = 22, solve for y.

    As the rule says group “like terms” together particularly referring to similar variables. In the example we have, the “like terms” refer to 4y + 6y, and so you make 10y + 12 = 22.

    Separate the variable and put in -12 to both sides of the equation like this: 10y + 12 - 12 = 22 – 12. This will yield 10y = 10.

    Divide each side by 10 to find your answer of y=1

  3. Study the rule on algebraic multiplication. Almost the same principles apply here. Let us say you are asked to multiply this one:  z (3z + 5 + 6).

    The rule stated in step two says you have to select “like terms” and group them together. Therefore, you will initially have z (3z + 11) because you combined together 5 and 6.

    Another rule to follow says that variables are simply multiplied in the same manner as numbers, like 3 times 3 equals 9 and so z times z equals z². Based on this rule, multiply every term inside the parentheses by z, and so you will have 3z² + 11z.

  4. Study the rules on factoring. In algebra, factoring reduces complex terms, such as complicated figures and exponents, into smaller and simplified terms. Start from the very basics; for example the number 4 you can factor into 4 and 1 or maybe 2 and 2. Take it from there until you reach more complex factors. Let us assume you are assigned to factor a complex equation like m² + 5m = 0.

    Find the common elements in the equation, such as (m² = m times m) and (5m = 5 times m). Next, take out the common element and yield m (m + 5) = 0. Our equation is suggesting that the inclusive two factors will become 0 once multiplied.

    The first solution available is to recall the rule that says any number regardless of its value, once multiplied with 0, will necessarily result in 0. Hence, to arrive at m = 0, the equation should be 0 (0 + 5) equals 0.

    The second option available to yield 0 for (m + 5) is to replace m with -5.  You will have 5 (-5 + 5) = -5 (0) = 0. Therefore, in this example, m can either be -5 or 0.

  5. Constant practice can lead to perfection. Practice algebra at every opportunity. If you have a book to study from, always check your answers after you finish a set of problems.

You should not be fearful about algebra in any way. There are lots of materials available online that can teach you how to do algebra step by step.


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