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**Complex Fractions and Review of Order of Operations**

Chapter 1 / Whole Numbers and Introduction to Algebra Section 4.6 Complex Fractions and Review of Order of Operations

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**Chapter 1 / Whole Numbers and Introduction to Algebra**

Complex Fraction A fraction whose numerator or denominator or both numerator and denominator contain fractions is called a complex fraction. Martin-Gay, Prealgebra, 5ed

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**Method 1 for Simplifying Complex Fractions**

This method makes use of the fact that a fraction bar means division. 1 3 1 4 When dividing fractions, multiply by the reciprocal of the divisor. Martin-Gay, Prealgebra, 5ed

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**Method 1 for Simplifying Complex Fractions . . .**

Recall the order of operations. Since the fraction bar is a grouping symbol, simplify the numerator and denominator separately. Then divide. 2 8 1 When dividing fractions, multiply by the reciprocal of the divisor. Martin-Gay, Prealgebra, 5ed

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**Method 2 for Simplifying Complex Fractions**

Chapter 1 / Whole Numbers and Introduction to Algebra Method 2 for Simplifying Complex Fractions This method is to multiply the numerator and the denominator of the complex fraction by the LCD of all the fractions in its numerator and its denominator. Since this LCD is divisible by all denominators, this has the effect of leaving sums and differences of terms in the numerator and the denominator and thus a simple fraction. Let’s use this method to simplify the complex fraction of the previous example. Martin-Gay, Prealgebra, 5ed

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**Method 2 for Simplifying Complex Fractions . . .**

Chapter 1 / Whole Numbers and Introduction to Algebra Method 2 for Simplifying Complex Fractions . . . Step 1: The complex fraction contains fractions with denominators of 2, 6, 4, and 3. The LCD is 12. By the fundamental property of fractions, multiply the numerator and denominator of the complex fraction by 12. Step 2: Apply the distributive property Martin-Gay, Prealgebra, 5ed

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**Method 2 for Simplifying Complex Fractions . . .**

Chapter 1 / Whole Numbers and Introduction to Algebra Method 2 for Simplifying Complex Fractions . . . The result is the same no matter which method is used. Step 3: Multiply. Step 4: Simplify. Martin-Gay, Prealgebra, 5ed

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**Chapter 1 / Whole Numbers and Introduction to Algebra**

Reviewing the Order of Operations 1. Do all operations within grouping symbols such as parentheses or brackets. 2. Evaluate any expressions with exponents. 3. Multiply or divide in order from left to right. 4. Add or subtract in order from left to right. Martin-Gay, Prealgebra, 5ed

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