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What is a Term

A Term is a number or the product of a number including variables raised to powers often split up by addition signs. Now looking at this example, we see an addition sign here. Like, okay, this is a term, and this is a term. But this is a subtraction sign, so let’s write this a little bit differently to make sure that it’s definitely split up by an addition sign. So we can manipulate this expression a little bit, so let’s do that. So we have 2x cubed plus xy, and then plus negative y squared divided by 5. So now that we have a plus here and a plus there, that means that our terms consist of 2x cubed, we also have xy, and, including that negative, y squared divided by 5. Now there’s also this idea of the coefficients of terms, and these coefficients are numbers actually in front of the variables. And again, some of them might seem very obvious, some of them might not seem very obvious. Let’s take this one for example. This is one of our more obvious ones. The number in front of the variable is actually a 2. So we can say that the coefficient of 2x cubed is 2. Now looking at this, this one is not so obvious. So we have to think of this as a little implied 1 there, so we have 1 times xy. So the coefficient of xy is simply 1. Now on this last one here, you have a negative y squared divided by 5, so I’m kind of unsure of what’s really in front of the y. Well we know here that there’s like a little implied 1, but what that can consist of, it’s actually saying, that’s actually equal to negative 1/5 times y squared. So, our coefficient of negative 1/5 y squared is negative 1/5.

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