Mathematics » Rational Expressions and Equations » Solve Rational Equations

Solving Rational Equations Summary

Key Concepts

  • Strategy to Solve Equations with Rational Expressions
    1. Note any value of the variable that would make any denominator zero.
    2. Find the least common denominator of all denominators in the equation.
    3. Clear the fractions by multiplying both sides of the equation by the LCD.
    4. Solve the resulting equation.
    5. Check.
    • If any values found in Step 1 are algebraic solutions, discard them.
    • Check any remaining solutions in the original equation.


rational equation

A rational equation is two rational expressions connected by an equal sign.

extraneous solution to a rational equation

An extraneous solution to a rational equation is an algebraic solution that would cause any of the expressions in the original equation to be undefined.

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