Unit 7 - Objective 5 - Solving Fractional Equations


An equation in which one or more terms is a fraction is called a fractional equation or rational equation.  We multiply the equation (every term, both sides) by the least common denominator (nonzero quantity) to clear the denominator.

Examples:

1.
u7obj501.gif (2118 bytes)

 

x = 4(2x - 3) (now we want to solve for x)
x = 8x - 12 (got the x on one side)
-8x = -8x

-7x = -12 (now divide)
x = -12/-7 = 12/7 (You need to make sure this number does not give you a zero in the denominator of you original equation, which it does not)

2. u7obj502.gif (5057 bytes)

(If you plug this into your denominator in your original fraction you will get a zero because 1 - 1 = 0.  So there is NO solution to this problem.)


3. u7obj503.gif (4729 bytes)

(If you plug this into the denominator in your original equation you do not get zero so 17/2 is the answer.)


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