Like and Unlike Terms

Like and Unlike Terms – Definitions, Solved Examples | Difference Between Like & Unlike Terms

Algebraic expressions are those that contain both constants and variables, as well as arithmetic operations like addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. As an example: 4x +6y = 30 is an algebraic expression since it has three terms: 4x, 6y, and 30. The first two terms are 4x and 6y, with x and y being variables and 30 being a constant. As a result, algebraic terms are discrete parts of an equation separated by plus or minus signs. There are two kinds of algebraic words: like terms and unlike terms.

In this article, 6th-grade math students can obtain complete information about similar and dissimilar terms in an algebraic expression.

What are Like Terms?

Like terms are ones that have the same variables and exponent power. The coefficients of these factors might vary. Algebraic-like words are terms that are related to one another. The algebraic expression’s similar terms can be combined to simplify the equation and deduce the solution in a straightforward manner.

For example, this is equivalent to the algebraic statement 32y + 14y, where y is the same variable in the expression and the coefficients differ. To make it simpler, we may combine the two like words, i.e. 32y + 14y = 22y. As a result, all arithmetic operations, including addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division, can only be done like algebraic expressions.

What are Unlike Terms?

Unlike terms have variables and exponents that differ from one another. When the coefficient of an expression is different, the variables are different (two variables), and the exponent powers are dissimilar. For instance, unlike algebraic terms is the algebraic equation 5x + 8y, where x and y are two separate variables with different coefficients.

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Difference Between Like and Unlike Terms

We’ve previously learned that words with the same literal coefficients are termed similar terms, and they can only differ in their numerical coefficients, whereas terms with different literal coefficients are called, unlike terms. Let us examine the distinctions between them.

The distinction between like and unlike terms is outlined here.

Like terms Unlike terms
They have identical variable components, meaning they are made up of the same variable(s) with the same exponent (s). They have various variable components, i.e. they are made up of various variable(s) or they have different exponents (s).
Like words can be added and subtracted together. Unlike words cannot be added or subtracted at the same time.
Like terms can be simplified further by combining them. Unlike terms cannot be simplified further by combining them.

Solved Examples on Like and Unlike Terms

1. Find out Like terms : 2x² + 6x + 4y + 9x

This expression may be rewritten as follows if it is rearranged:
2x²+ 9x + 6x + 4y
Whereas like terms are 9x and 6x
So, Like terms have identical variables raised to the same exponent.

2. Find out Unlike terms : 3xy + 2x² + 7xy +2y² +3x²

This expression may be rewritten as follows if it is rearranged:
3x² +2x² + 2y²+7xy + 3xy Where unlike terms are 2y²
So, Unlike terms that have different variables raised to the different exponent.

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Frequently Asked Questions on Similar and Dissimilar Terms

1. What are like and unlike terms and give examples?

Like terms are the terms in an algebraic expression that can be added or subtracted together. An example of similar or like terms is 3x, 16x as the same variable term. Unlike terms are the terms in an expression, where they can’t be added or subtracted together. Dissimilar terms example si 3xy, 4x.

2. How do you distinguish like and unlike terms?

Examine the variable component of the words, and it will be simple to distinguish between like and unlike terms. As like terms have the same variable component, unlike terms have a separate variable portion.

3. How do we come up with like and unlike terms?

In an algebraic equation, similar terms exist when the variables are the same despite having distinct coefficients and exponents. In contrast, if the expression has two distinct variables, exponents, or coefficients, it is referred to as an unlike term.

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