Letters are used in algebra in place of an unknown number, giving us algebraic terms like 2x. When algebraic terms are combined with mathematical operations, eg + or - we get an algebraic expression.

Algebraic terms and expressions can be multiplied in the same way as numbers.

etc

Remember that is not the same as

In general,

- Question
Simplify:

a)

b)

a) and , so:

Alternatively, using the general rule: .

b)

is the same as when using this rule, eg

Multiply letters and the numbers separately:

means which is

means which is

- Question
Simplify

Or, an alternative method would be: