Calculating distance and time conversions is an essential part of algebra and most math courses. It is also a part of math that is useful in everyday life and business. Converting distance is much tougher than time because there are so many different units of distance, although most should be in either the metric system (meters, kilometers) or the system of measurement used in the United States (miles, feet). Distances can also vary depending on the country (see Resources).

Here's an example of a conversion and feet per second calculation.

Distance: 1 mile per hour 1 mile = 1 x 5280 feet = 5280 feet

Time: 1 hour = 1 x 60 minutes = 60 minutes x 60 seconds = 3600 seconds

Answer: 5280 feet/3600 seconds = 1.467 feet per second

Any calculator can perform this task. There are also good online calculator options (see Resources).

Begin with the distance. Make sure this number is converted to feet before proceeding (see Resources for help).

Calculate the time. Unlike distance measurements, time does not have hundreds of units and will most likely be in seconds, minutes and/or hours. If time is in minutes or hours, multiply by 60 to convert to seconds.

With both measurements ascertained, divide feet over time to get the answer.