# Help Zone

### Student Question

Secondary II • 2yr.

Hello, We are starting to see algebra in my math class and I was wondering if a = 1, b = 2, c = 3, etc. according to the rank of the letters in the alphabet ? Thank you!

Mathematics

## Explanations (1)

• Explanation from Alloprof

Explanation from Alloprof

This Explanation was submitted by a member of the Alloprof team.

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Team Alloprof • 2yr. edited September 2021

Good evening!

Unfortunately no. In an algebraic expression, the letters used are not equal to their rank in the alphabet.

Depending on the equation, it is often necessary to do some mathematical manipulation in order to know the value of the variables in the equation.

Let us take the example of the following simple equation:

$$2a + 1 = 5 - 4a$$

To know the value of the variable \a \. Let us send the terms involving the variable \a\ on the left side and the other terms on the right side:

$$2a + 4a = 5 - 1$$

Which gives as result:

$$6a = 4$$

therefore,

$$a = \ frac {4} {6}$$

As we saw in the previous example, the variable \ (a \) does not have the value of 1 as its rank in the alphabet.

Do not hesitate to ask other questions!