What Is Area in Math?


Quick Answer

In mathematics, area is defined as the amount of two-dimensional space occupied by a shape. It can be calculated by multiplying two lengths of the shape, such as the length and width of a rectangle. The units of area are always unit of length squared.

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Full Answer

The area of a two-dimensional shape can be calculated by measuring the dimensions of the shape and plugging them into a simple formula. For example, the area of a rectangle is defined as length x width (A = l x w). If a certain rectangle was found to have a length of 10 centimeters and a width of 5 cm, then the area of that rectangle is 50 cm squared.

10 cm x 5 cm = 50cm^2

Other commonly used formulas for calculating area:

Area of a square = s^2, where s=side

Area of a triangle = b x h, where b=base and h=height

Area of a circle = pi x r^2, where r=radius and pi is a mathematical constant

Formulas used for calculating area exist for all simple shapes but not for complex shapes. If a complex shape is the composite of two or more simple shapes, then its area can be calculated by finding the sum of the component shapes' areas.

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