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### How to Factor Out Numbers

Factoring is the opposite of distributing. When distributing, you multiply a series of terms by a common factor. When factoring, you seek to find what a series of terms have in common and then take it [more…]

### How to Factor Out Variables

You can factor out variables from the terms in an expression. You factor out variables the same way as you do numbers *except* that when you factor out powers of a variable, the [more…]

### Factoring Binomials

If a binomial expression can be factored at all, it must be factored in one of four ways. To decide which way you will use, you first look at the addition or subtraction sign that always separates the [more…]

### Solving Absolute-Value Equations

A linear absolute value equation is an equation that takes the form |*ax* + *b*| = *c*. Taking the equation at face value, you don’t know if you should change what’s in between the absolute value bars to its [more…]

### How to Solve Linear Equations with Division

A basic method for solving linear equations is to divide each side of the equation by the same number. Many formulas and equations include a coefficient, or multiplier, with the variable. To get rid of [more…]

### How to Solve Linear Equations with Multiplication

To solve linear equations with multiplication, you first determine that division is being used in the linear equation. Multiplication is the inverse (opposite) operation of division, so you can use multiplication [more…]

### How to Identify a Quadratic Expression

You can identify a quadratic expression (or second-degree expression) because it's an expression that has a variable that's squared and no variables with powers higher than 2 in any of the terms. [more…]

### How to Solve Linear Equations with Both Multiplication and Division

Often, you need to use both multiplication and division to solve a linear equation. When a linear equation uses both multiplication and division, you solve by using the inverse operation of each. So, if [more…]

### How to Factor an Expression Taking out the Greatest Common Factor

You can factor a quadratic expression to make it easier to work with. Some quadratic expressions can be made better by finding a greatest common factor [more…]

### Applying the FOIL Method to Binomials

When you multiply two binomials, you can use the FOIL method. The letters in FOIL refer to two terms — one from each of two binomials — multiplied together in a certain order: [more…]

### How to Multiply Binomials Using the FOIL Method

The FOIL method lets you multiply two binomials in a particular order. You don't *have* to multiply binomials by following the FOIL order, but it does make the process easier. The letters in FOIL refer to [more…]

### How to Factor a Trinomial by UnFOILing

UnFOILing is a method for factoring a trinomial into two binomials. When you multiply two binomials together, you use the FOIL method, multiplying the [more…]

### How to Factor Expressions More Than Once

Sometimes you factor expressions more than once — and with different factoring techniques. To determine if an expression needs to be factored more than once, just take another look at the expression after [more…]

### How to Solve Linear Equations with Reciprocals

You can use the reciprocal of the number that you’re trying to “get rid of” if a fraction is multiplying the variable. You solve linear equations with reciprocals when you see a fraction — it's easier [more…]

### How to Unevenly Group Four Terms for Factoring

Sometimes in factoring, four terms can be separated into uneven groupings with three terms in one group and one term in the other. Unevenly grouping four terms for factoring can be applied to expressions [more…]

### How to Factor the Sum of Two Perfect Cubes

The rule for factoring the sum of two perfect cubes is almost the same as the rule for factoring the difference between perfect cubes. You just have to change two little signs to make it work. The sum [more…]

### How to Factor the Difference of Two Perfect Squares

If two terms in a binomial are perfect squares separated by subtraction, then you can factor them. To factor the difference of two perfect squares, remember this rule: if subtraction separates two squared [more…]

### How to Add Fractions

Adding fractions is easy if the denominators are the same, but adding fractions with different denominators requires care. If you set up an algebraic equation to add fractions with different denominators [more…]

### How to Factor the Difference of Two Perfect Cubes

To factor the difference of two perfect cubes, remember this rule: the difference of two perfect cubes equals the difference of their cube roots multiplied by the sum of their squares and the product of [more…]

### How to Group Six Terms for Factoring

You can group terms for factoring in expressions where the terms don't share a common factor or common variable. When grouping six terms for factoring, there’s the chance that the groups can be two groups [more…]

### Order of Operations in Algebra

Solve algebra problems correctly by following the order of operations. When performing more than one operation on an algebraic expression, work out the operations and signs in the following order: [more…]

### Algebra Formulas Worth Memorizing

Some formulas occur frequently when you're doing algebraic manipulations and working through mathematical applications. You'll find ways to use these algebra formulas even when you're doing something other [more…]

### Algebra's Rules of Divisibility

In algebra, knowing the rules of divisibility can help you solve faster. When factoring algebraic expressions to solve equations, you need to be able to pull out the greatest factor. You also need common [more…]

### Algebra I For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Algebra problems are easier to solve when you know the rules and formulas. Memorizing key algebra formulas will speed up your work, too. And if you know the rules of divisibility and the order of operations [more…]

### How to Find Higher Math Functions on the TI-89 Graphing Calculator

Of course, your TI-89 graphing calculator helps you with higher math functions — that’s part of the reason you bought it. However, you might need help finding everything. The following list doesn’t tell [more…]