A monomial is the simplest algebraic expression; it is formed by the product of numbers and letters or variables (with powers) .

It has two parts: the number part is called coefficient, and the letter part is called literal part.


  -4x (-4 is the coefficient and x is the literal part)

  3xy2z5  (3 is the coefficient and xy2z5 is the literal part)

  4x/y isn’t a monomial

The degree of a variable is the index of its power and the degree of the monomial is the addition of the degrees of its variables.
Examples: 4x has degree 1 and 3xy2z5 has degree 8 (= 1 + 2 + 5).
Two monomials are called similar or like monomials if they have the same literal part.

Decide which of these expressions are monomials:

a) x3 + 3x - 1

b) xy/2


d) x - y

e) a/b

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