Simplifying Complex Fractions
Recall that a fraction can be written using the division symbol,
can be written 2
can be written (4x + 15) Ã· (x + 8).
can be written
, is called a complex fraction.
A complex fraction is a fraction that contains other fractions.
Here are some examples of complex fractions:
To simplify a complex fraction we first write it as a division problem.
Then we follow the procedure for dividing rational expressions.
To Simplify a Complex Fraction
Step 1 Write the complex fraction using a division symbol,
Step 2 Invert the second fraction and change the division symbol,
, to the multiplication symbol, Â·.
Step 3 Factor the numerators and denominators.
Step 4 Cancel all pairs of factors common to the numerators and
Step 5 Multiply the numerators. Multiply the denominators.