How Do You Read a Ruler?


Quick Answer

One reads a ruler by using the hash marks on the ruler to read off each large number, which denote inches. After one reads the inch on the ruler, then one reads the smaller linear marks next to that inch, which indicate the fractions of an inch.

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Full Answer

Each large number on a ruler is indicative of one inch, and there are twelve inches on a standard ruler. Between the inch marks are smaller hash marks in one of four different sizes. The largest mark after the inch line is the halfway mark. The second largest are two hash marks which denote the one-quarter and three-quarter points as read from left to right. The third largest marks represent the one, three, five, and seven-eighths points. The smallest marks represent the sixteenths fractions of an inch.

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