# Cancel

Cancel refers to an operation used in term **mathematics** to remove terms from an expression leaving it in a simpler form. For example, in the fraction 6/8, the **factor** 2 can be removed from both the numerator and the denominator leaving the irreducible fraction 3/4. In this instance the 2 is said to be canceled out of the expression. Canceling is particularly useful for solving algebraic equations. The solution to the equation x - 7 = 4 is obtained by adding 7 to each side of the equation resulting in x = 11. When we add 7 to the left side of the equation, we cancel the -7 and put the equation in a simpler form. Typically, canceling is performed by using inverse operations. These are operations such as **multiplication** and **division** or **addition** and **subtraction** which "undo" one another.

## Resources

### Books

Bittinger, Marvin L., and Davic Ellenbogen. *Intermediate Algebra: Concepts and Applications.* 6th ed. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley Publishing, 2001.

Blitzer, Robert. *Algebra and Trigonometry.* 2nd ed. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2003.

## Additional topics

Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: *Calcium Sulfate* to *Categorical imperative*