What is 4×4+4×4+4-4×4 ?

1 min read

Most respondents tend to answer this sequentially, rather than by using PEMDAS* or BIDMAS** to ensure the mathematical operations are done in the correct order, that being:

  1. Parentheses or Brackets
  2. Exponents or Indices
  3. Multiplication
  4. Division
  5. 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!)

=      20


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


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