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Military Flight Aptitude: Mathematical Operations to Solve for x

The Military Flight Aptitude Test might ask questions that involve using mathematical operations or algebraic expressions. An algebraic expression is a collection of numbers and variables. You can solve simple algebraic expressions by using the basic mathematical operations to isolate the variable.

To add or subtract algebraic expressions for this purpose, start by arranging like terms and combining or subtracting them. For example, to solve x + 27 = 23, you can simply subtract 27 from both sides to get x = 23 – 27 or x = –4.

You can add and subtract like terms only. For instance, you can subtract 2x from 10x to get 8x, but you can’t subtract 2x2 from 10x because x and x2 aren’t the same term.

When you have a simple formula such as 10x = 50, you can solve for x by isolating it with division. To do so, you must divide each side by 10 to get x = 5. The same goes for multiplication; you can solve x / 2 = 8 by multiplying both sides by 2. Remember that multiplying two positive or two negative numbers creates a positive answer; multiplying one positive and one negative number results in a negative answer.

With any operation, you should always double-check your answer by plugging it in for the variable to ensure that the equation works. If not, check your math.

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