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Simplifying Radical Expressions - Problem 2

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Teacher/Instructor Alissa Fong
Alissa Fong

MA, Stanford University
Teaching in the San Francisco Bay Area

Alissa is currently a teacher in the San Francisco Bay Area and Brightstorm users love her clear, concise explanations of tough concepts

There are two ways to simplify radicals that we look at here. For the first method, you need to be pretty strong with your ability to look at a number and find a perfect square that multiplies into it. The general idea is that you re-write the original radical as the product of two radicals, one of which is a perfect square. Then you simplify the perfect square piece. If you are not as good at working with perfect squares, in a second method, you break the integer into it's prime factorization, and look for pair of primes that show up. That pair represents the square root of a perfect square, and one of those values can go outside the root.

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