# Multiplying Letters in Algebra

Letters can be multiplied with numbers, other letters and the same letter.

• A letter can be multiplied with a number.

Write the number in front of the letter.

• A letter can be multiplied with a different letter.

Write the letters next to each other.

• A letter can be multiplied with the same letter.

When you multiply a letter with itself, use exponent notation. A letter is multiplied by itself is squared. A small 2 is written above and to the right of the letter to indicate it is mutlipled by itself 2 times.

# Multiplying Letters to Make Terms

A term is a collection of letters and numbers multiplied together.

In the examples above, the letter a has been multiplied with a number, the letter b and itself to make terms.

These multiplications can all be combined to make a more complicated term:

We just write the letters and numbers next to each other. If a letter is multiplied by itself, write an exponent by that letter to show how many times the letter has been multiplied by itself.

Terms can then be multiplied together.

# A Real Example of How to Multiply Letters in Algebra

The slider below shows a real example of how to multiply letters in algebra.

Algebra Lessons
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# Exponent Notation

Exponent notation is used when a letter is multipled by itself.

Note: A letter by itself has an implicit exponent of 1 (this is one of the laws of exponents).

Sometimes we will be multiplying letters which each have an exponent.

There is a law for multiplying letters with exponents. Simply add the exponents together.