Whenever you see parentheses
, those should be dealt with first. However, other grouping symbols such as brackets, braces, and absolute value
signs act like parentheses also. If you have more than one set of grouping symbols, you should do the innermost grouping first and then work your way outward. Exponents
are next in the order of operations. After clearing all the grouping symbols, you should work with the exponents. If there are exponents within the grouping symbols, you should address them when working with the parentheses. Multiplication and division
are actually on the same level of importance in order of operations. So when remembering the letters PEMDAS, keep in mind that you should do multiplication and division in the order they appear in the problem. So if division is first and then multiplication, you must do the division first.
As with the multiplication and division, addition and subtraction
are on the same level in working with order of operations. It is not addition then subtraction, it is whatever order they appear in the problem.