How Do You Add, Subtract, Multiply and Divide Fractions?

Add and subtract fractions by finding like denominators and then adding or subtracting the numerators. To multiply fractions, simply multiply the numerators and denominators together. To divide fractions, multiply the first fraction by the inverse of the second fraction. Finish by simplifying your answer.

1. Calculate like fractions

The fractions in addition and subtraction problems must have the same denominators. If the two fractions in a math problem have different denominators, convert the fractions to equivalent fractions that share the same denominator.

2. Add or subtract the numerators

In addition problems, add the numerators together to find the numerator of the sum and use the common denominator as the denominator of the sum. For subtraction problems, subtract the second numerator from the first numerator to find the numerator for the difference, and use the common denominator as the denominator of the difference.

3. Multiply fractions

To find the product of two fractions, multiply the numerators of the fractions together to find the numerator of the product. Multiply the denominators of the fractions together to find the denominator of the product.

4. Divide the fractions

Turn the second fraction in a division problem upside down to find its reciprocal. Multiply the first fraction by this reciprocal to find the quotient.

5. Simplify the answer

Simplify any answer that is in the form of a fraction. Divide the numerator and denominator by their greatest common factor.

Similar Articles