# Talk

## powers and roots

(4 Posts)
irvineoneohone Thu 15-Jun-17 21:28:51

My ds is learning maths mainly from American websites, and I am aware terminology is different. I was wondering when(what year groups) do they learn things like fractional exponents, negative exponents, roots of decimal & fractions, higher index roots etc. in English NC, and are they called the same or something different?
They are under Algebra1 in American programme, what are they categolised in England?

What are "surds"? I have seen that word on some maths threads, but have no clue. Are they something similar?

TIA

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HemiDemiSemiquaver Sat 17-Jun-17 07:32:53

they do them in about Year 10 usually, sometimes Year 9 , though it depends on the school and teacher and set and so on.

Yes, some of these are surds (usually used to refer to the root notation). They use that word when talking about the topic that involves simplifying surds (changing root 45 to 3 root 5, for example), rationalising denominators, and that sort of thing.

They tend to use the word power rather than exponent in the UK, and they tend to use 'powers' to talk about the topic where they learn rules about manipulating numbers with various powers (adding the powers when you multiply numbers with the same base, etc), including fractional powers.

HemiDemiSemiquaver Sat 17-Jun-17 07:34:50

Or indices. Many schools use that as well instead of/as well as powers as the name of the topic, though I've not heard any of the pupils ever refer to an 'index' by itself. They just know that they whole thing can be called 'indices'.

but rarely exponents. Though they do use the word 'exponential' when referring to graphs.

(My source - pupils that I've tutored from a whole variety of nearby schools! This may all be different around the country, of course).

irvineoneohone Sat 17-Jun-17 09:52:43

Thank you for great explanation, Hemi

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