A mathematical equation is an expression containing at least one variable (=unknown value) and an "equals sign" ( = ) with a mathematical expression on each side of it. The equals sign says that both sides are exactly the same value. An equation can be as simple as x=0, or as hard as 4(3y^99)+76=42÷3x or harder.
There are two kinds of mathematical equations:
- The kind of equation that is either true or false; these are also called identities. For example:
- The kind of equation that lets you calculate the value of one or several variables. The equation is only true if the variable(s) have that value. For example:
The second kind is often used to solve problems in which you have to know the value of some variables. For example,
Types of equations
- An algebraic equation is an equation in which both sides are polynomials. These are further classified by degree:
- A Diophantine equation is an equation where the unknowns are required to be integers
- A differential equation is a functional equation involving derivatives of the unknown functions
Equation Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.