How to Divide Rational Numbers

Dividing rational numbers requires multiplying fractions.
••• Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images

A rational number is any number that can be expressed as a fraction. A fraction is a number that is used to represent a part of something. For example, a piece of pie is a fraction of a pie. If you have 5 slices of pie, one slice is 1/5 of the pie. The number on top of a fraction is called the numerator. The number on the bottom of a fraction is called the denominator. Rational numbers never have zero as the denominator. Once you learn how to divide fractions, you can divide rational numbers.

    Write an equation with the rational numbers represented as fractions. For example, 2/4 ÷ 2/3 =

    Find the reciprocal of the second rational number by reversing the numerator and the denominator. For example, the reciprocal of 2/3 is 3/2.

    Multiply the first fraction by the reciprocal of the second fraction. For example, 2/4 x 3/2 = 6/8

    Reduce the final fraction to the lowest common denominator by dividing the numerator and denominator by the greatest common factor. For example, the greatest common factor of 6/8 is 2, so 6 ÷ 2/8 ÷ 2 = 3/4.

    Tips

    • When dividing positive and negative rational numbers, the result is always negative. When dividing two numbers of the same sign, the result is always positive.

Related Articles

How Do You Simplify Your Slope
How to Take the Natural Log of a Fraction With X in...
How to Calculate Population Ratios
How to Subtract, Add & Simplify Fractions
How to Cross Multiply
Characteristics of Aquatic Plants
How to Convert a Fraction to a Ratio
Test Your Knowledge on Middle School Science
Multiplying Fractions
How to Divide Fractions With Ease
How to: Improper Fractions Into Proper Fractions
How to Find a Fraction of a Number
How to Find the Fractional Part of a Number
What is the Identity Property of Multiplication?
How to Find the X Intercept of a Function
Adding & Subtracting Fractions
How to Multiply 3 Fractions
How to Change Mixed Numbers Into Improper Fractions
How to Calculate the Midpoint Between Two Numbers
How to Convert Hours & Minutes to Decimals