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Factoring(1): Factoring out the GCF

 
 
Recall:                        

1)      The Greatest Common Factor (GCF) of two numbers is the greatest number that will multiply into both numbers evenly – it will generally be smaller than the two numbers.

2)      When dealing with variables, the GCF is the smallest power of the variable.

 

When factoring a polynomial, the first step is to factor out the GCF, if one exists.

 

HOW TO FACTOR OUT THE GCF:

1)      Write the GCF of all the terms in the polynomial.  (If the polynomial has a negative leading term, a negative GCF is preferred.)

2)      Divide each term in the polynomial by the GCF and write the resulting polynomial, in parentheses, after the GCF.

 

EXAMPLES WITH EXPLANATIONS:     (Click image to enlarge)

 

MORE EXAMPLES WITH EXPLANATIONS:        (Click Image to enlarge)

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