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Dimensional Analysis

Q:  If Sue codes 8 charts in 2 minutes, how many charts does she code in an hour?

A:  Ahhh, the fancy word that some chose to use for converting is “dimensional analysis”…  I think it is kind of overkill… Why not just call it converting?

What we currently have is:

8 charts / 2 minutes

Remember, “per” is just a fancy word that can be replaced by a division sign.  So 8 charts in (per) 2 minutes: 8/2

We can divide the numbers to get 4 charts / minute (or 4 charts / 1 minute)

So, Sue codes:

4 charts / minute

The answer above gives charts per minute. We want charts per hour.

So, convert like so… There are 60 minutes per hour:

(4 charts / minute)*(60 minutes / hour)

Cancel out the unit minutes (since there is one on top and one on bottom)

(4 charts / minute)*(60 minutes / hour)

4*60 charts / hour = 240 charts / hour

Sue completes 240 charts per hour.

Now, to some of you it may seem as though I made this problem a little more difficult that it was.  Maybe I did.. but, I am trying to teach a method that will work every time for similar problems… This is a great method to use when converting!

One thought on “Dimensional Analysis

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