What Is Absolute Value?

Absolute Value

An absolute value, or modulus, of a number is the non-negative value of the number without regard to its sign.

The absolute value of a number is denoted by || either side of the number.

For example, the aboslute value of 2 is denoted below, and is equal to 2:

What Is the Absolute Value of a Positive Number?

The absolute value of a positive number is just that positive number. For example:

What Is the Absolute Value of a Negative Number?

The absolute value of a negative number is the non-negative value of that number. It is that number with the minus sign ( - ) removed. For example:

Visualizing Absolute Values on a Number Line

On a number line, the absolute value of a number is given by its distance from zero.

For example, it can be seen that 3 is 3 away from zero, and so has an absolute value of 3. It can also be seen that -2 is 2 away from 0, and so has an absolute value of 2:

The Absolute Value of Zero

The absolute value of 0 is 0. 0 is neither a positive nor negative number.

As the absolute value of any other number is always positive, the absolute value of any number must be greater or equal to 0.

See Also

What are natural numbers? What are whole numbers? What are positive numbers? What are negative numbers?