What does it mean to simplify fractions?

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jgeertz's profile pic

jgeertz | College Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

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To simplify a fraction means to reduce the fraction to its lowest terms. This is when both the numerator and denominator have no common factors remaining except for 1 or -1.

To simplify the fraction 12/20, factor the numerator and denominator.

12 = 3 x 4 

__________ 

20 = 5 x 4

Then divide or cancel any factor that shows up in the numerator and denominator since their quotient is 1.

3/5 x 1 = 3/5

The same concept applies for simplifying rational or fractional expressions in algebra.

 

 

 

jess1999's profile pic

jess1999 | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

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Simplifying fractions means that making a fraction into its simplest form .

Here are examples of simplifying fractions : 

2 / 4 simplifies to  1 / 2

25 / 50 simplifies to 1 / 2

zumba96's profile pic

zumba96 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 3) Valedictorian

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Simplify fractions means to put it into lowest terms for example

10/20 can be reduced to 1/2 

12/36 can be reduced to 1/3

atyourservice's profile pic

atyourservice | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 3) Valedictorian

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It means to lower the fraction to its simplest form. For example if you are told to simplify `2/4`   the lowest form will be `1/2` since they can both be divided by 2

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