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Algebra I Recipe: Simplifying Rational Expressions
A. Definition and Fact
  1. rational expression – a fraction whose numerator and denominator are polynomials.
  2. A rational expression is simplified when the numerator and denominator have no factors in common.
B. How to Simplify Rational Expressions
  1. Factor each numerator and denominator.
  2. Cancel like factors.
  3. The answer is the factors that did not cancel.
  4. If the numerator or denominator has more than one factor remaining that didn’t cancel:
    • Single terms/factors get multiplied.
    • Binomial factors remain in factored form.

G Redden

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