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# Practical Algebra: A Self-Teaching Guide, Second Edition

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on May 31, 2016
I had studied algebra before, so this was review for me. Anyway, I read the entire book and solved every problem. Whenever I got an answer wrong I would study the book’s answer, understand why I got the answer wrong, then re-do the problem. Two or three times I needed to consult a math expert via the internet because I didn’t understand how the book got its answer.

The answers to the problems are directly below the problems, with a dashed line separating the set of problems from the set of answers. While working your way through the book it is best to quickly place a blank piece of paper below any dashed lines you see, so that you don’t get a peek at the answers before doing the problems.

Before starting on the book, I searched the Amazon reviews to see what typographical errors others had discovered. I printed out a list of them to use as I worked though the book. While working though the book I discovered errors that other reviewers had not mentioned. Here is a list of every error in the second edition, as far as I know:

Page 3 – Division problem (d) at the bottom shows “1430 - 1364 = 66.” That should be “1430 - 1384 = 46.”

Page 17 – In frame 21 there is a sentence that begins “Do all multiplications and then all divisions first . . .” The word “then” in that sentence should be deleted because it gives the impression that you don’t do any divisions until all multiplications have been completed. The correct procedure is to do multiplications or divisions as they come up, as you work from left to right; they have equal rank.

Page 55 – In frame 5, the answer given for (b) is “7 and 3.” The correct answer is “none.”

Page 123 – In problem #25 (b) the numerator “K cubed - 1” must be changed to “K cubed + 1” in order to get the answer the book gives.

Page 161 – Problem #40 has a denominator "A times 2". That should be "A squared."

Page 164 – The “check” for the answer to problem #60 has a radical sign with "16 - 3.5" under it. That should be "16 - 3(5)".

Page 169 -- The second paragraph begins with "Keeping in mind that our second axiom..." That should be "...our first axiom..."

Page 196 – The answer to question (e) is missing. The correct answer is “abscissa”.

Page 205 -- The first sentence says, “If this came out correctly, go to frame 15.” It should say, “…go to frame 14.”

Page 218 – On the graph, line (4) is shown as “2y – x + 7 = 0.” That should be “2y + x – 7 = 0.”

Page 244 – The answer to problem 4 (a) begins with a “z”. That should be an “x”.

Page 273 – Another reviewer wrote that the answer to problem (c) is mistakenly given as “1016” when it should be “508.” My book, however, gives the correct answer of “508 times per second.”

Page 274 – In the frame 11 inverse proportion table the “66 2/3” should be “666 2/3.”

Page 280 – The answer to problem (e) contains “(joint, inverse variation)” when it should simply be “(joint variation).”

Page 309 -- The answer to the candy problem (d) contains ".50x + 60(x+5)". There should be a decimal point in front of the 60. It should be ".50x + .60(x+5)".
on August 5, 2016
This is a really good book for my 6th grader. She had done pre algebra and I wanted her to start algebra 1 on her own. This book explains everything in detail and makes it easier to understand. I would recommend this to all who had difficulty in understanding algebra.
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on June 7, 2015
I first want to say that I recently finished a calculus II course and wanted to start "relearning" some basic concepts that may have been washed out over the years. I will say reading this book, in retrospect, makes me ever wonder how i struggled with this material in high school. The book explains content easily and clearly. Each chapter consists of sections with short explanations and questions followed by a self-test at the end of the chapter. No calculator is required for the work. For those who said that the text was small probably does not read too many math/science/physics books as I found the text to be larger than what i normally experience. I will say that this is not a stand alone guide and I do not think the authors make any indications that it is. If you are looking at taking a college algebra course or want something to supplement your child's algebra course this book makes an excellent and affordable purchase. If you have never taken algebra before or it has been a very long time then this book may still be difficult or you.
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on June 29, 2017
Practical Algebra is obviously a book about Algebra. Now, as the headline would suggest, I have ADD. Why is this relevant to the review? Well as a person with ADD, I find it hard to read books, especially math books, where there are paragraphs upon paragraphs explaining on how to do particular formulas. I get lost easily. This book doesn't do that at all. Instead, it works through the problems with short handed xplanations explaining why they're working through it, without making it extensive or wordy.

As a student who studies rigorous calculus, physics, chemistry and engineering, sometimes I have to go back to the basics of Algebra to learn something I'm unsure of, or just need a refresher, this book is perfect for me in those regards.

Pros
-Easy to learn
-Not too wordy
-Easy to pick up

Cons
-No graphs
-Book came to me with some weird stain on the side

Otherwise it's all good!
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on October 22, 2015
I looked through this book and even though I just got it, I see that it is very good on explaining how to solve problems. I am disabled and I like to occupy my time with what challenges my mind. If you are warming up on those yester year problems and need a little more help before moving forward, it recommends that you go over what ever section you need some help on and that book is Quick Arithmetic. I will be ordering that myself because I have always been bad a fractions and that has a big part in Algebra.

If you are trying to brush up on your Algebra, this is a great book to have and also get the Quick Arithmetic book.You won't be disappointed and there is nothing wrong with wrong answers, thats how you learn. This book is a must and I would recommend it to anyone.
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on January 3, 2016
I decided to get algebra 1& algebra 2 books so i can refresh my mind on the basics of algebra and prepare for the ACT. This book (if you do it everyday) will last for 2months, tops. Since i am planning on taking the ACT in June i kind of want to cram all of this in. ANYWAYS, about this book. First thing first, the explanations are great and concise. Unfortunately, it doesnt explain how you get the answers in the pratice problems which is 1 reason why i gave it 4 stars. There was a few problems i missed and DIDNT know why I missed it and no matter how I did the problem I couldnt get the right answer. The second reason I rated it four stars is the writing is REALLY small. Didn't stop me from reading it though but I wish They couldve used bigger fonts. Other than that I love how they explain things, I love how quick it is, and I love the fact that I can understand what the book is saying! Im really starting to think that teachers complicate things on purpose, lol. Also what I really love about this book it doesnt cover EVERYTHING that will be on the ACT Math test but it covers a big portion of it, which makes me happy! Great book!!
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on September 9, 2016
I used this years ago to get a foot up in algebra. I now have a minor in Mathematics and this “self-study” book got me started. It is a lot of work, but it works. If you keep at it and work through this book you will be able to whiz through algebra, the work horse of higher math.
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on November 4, 2015
I looked at and used several algebra review books as I prepared for a high-stakes professional examination that involved math. I had not looked at or thought about algebra since high school, and so I needed a good, thorough review. This book is "the IT book."

This book helped me re-learn algebra in a deep and meaningful way. And, it was kind of fun working my way through the book, reviewing concept after concept, skill after skill. I highly recommend it to students who need a little extra help at home to learn algebra.
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on October 6, 2016
I purchased this book to help me prepare for the GMAT as I wanted to refresh my memory on math concepts. It was fantastic and helped me achieve a great GMAT score. I then purchased a copy for a friend who had math anxiety; she said that the clear instructions and explanations helped her finally understand some simple concepts that had seemed confusing before.
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on June 12, 2017
If you want to self teach your self algebra... this is one of my top 3 favorite books on learning algebra without an instructor. This book is very good a teaching you how to do the calculations in an easy to understand way. Highly recommend.
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