Most respondents tend to answer this sequentially, rather than use PEMDAS* or BIDMAS** to ensure the mathematical operations are done in the correct order, that being:
- Parentheses or Brackets
- Exponents or Indices
- Addition and Subtraction (not necessarily in that order – done sequentially left to right. PEMDAS sounds better than PEMDSA.)
So, 4 x 4 + 4 x 4 + 4 – 4 x 4
= 16 + 16 + 4 – 16 (do all the multiplications first)
The most common incorrect answer is 320. Can you work out how that might have been obtained?
* If you’re in the US or Canada ** If you’re in the UK or Australia