What is a word problem in math? Definition and examples

What is a word problem? In math, a word problem uses mostly words to describe a math problem that requires a solution. 

For example, " A number minus six is fifteen. What is the number? " is a word problem. It uses words to describe the following math problem:

Solve for x if x - 6 = 15

Many word problems arise when we try to solve real-world situations.

More examples of word problems

Anita bought six pieces of candy. Then, she eats 4 of them. How many pieces of candy does she have left? 

This word problem can be solved with arithmetic.

2. The sum of two numbers is 11 and the product is 30. What are the two numbers?

This word problem can be solved with arithmetic or algebra.

3. Air is being pumped into a spherical balloon at a rate of 5 cubic inches per minute. Find the rate of change of the radius when the radius is 3 inches.

This word problem can be solved with Calculus.

Check 100 hard word problems in algebra to see a wide variety of word problems in math.

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