Expert Answers
msburch eNotes educator| Certified Educator


in this case, you want to combine your like terms (those with the same variable). 

You have 2a + 4a and 3b. Because 2a and 4a are both "a" terms, you may combine them into 6a. 


At this point, you can either leave your answer as it is, or factor out a 3. 

3(2a + b)

Using knowledge of the distributive property, you can factor a 3 out of the equation and simplify it for future use, although this is not necessary given the question that you sent in.

gsenviro eNotes educator| Certified Educator

2a + 3b + 4a = (2+4) a + 3b = 6a + 3b = 3 (2a + b)

trevor1234rowe | Student

Assuming that you are asking for help, it may be helpful to give some tips on the structure of expressions

consider the expression `2a^2 `

it can be broken down into 3 components consisting of a constant, and exponent, and a base!

`cx^n `




now some helpful tips!

when adding expressions together, it is only possible to simplify them if and only if they have the same base and exponent.

when adding expressions together, if it is possible to add them together, then you simply add the constants together, but keep the same base and exponent

lets use your problem as an example

`2a+3b+4a `


`2a + 4a + 3b `

notice how 2a and 4a have the same base and same exponent therefore, we can add them!

`(2+4)a + 2b = 6a + 2b `

now because 6a and 2b do not have the same base, we are unable to have them. The problem is now simplified

aishukul | Student

2a+3b+4a---You can only add alike variables. So in this case, you can only add the a's together. 

6a+3b is the answer to the problem since you cannot add the 3b to the 6a since they have different variables. 

bishama | Student

In algebraic expressions, only the like variables can be added. Hence, you can arrange the question as 2a+4a+3b=6a+3b

atyourservice | Student


You can only add the like terms together, so the 3b will be left out, we know that 2a and 4a both share a so they will be able to be added together:
2a + 4a + 3b
6a +3b is the answer
you can further simplify it by factoring 3
3(2a + b)