## How Well Do You Understand Powers and Exponents?

Here is a powers and exponents test and key.  Before you take the test let’s do a quick review of the basics of powers and exponents.

Key concepts to keep in mind about powers and exponents:

* a “power” is an easy way to write the product of the same number or variable
* the parts of a power include the base (the big number or variable on the bottom) and the exponent(small number we write above)
* the exponent tells us how many times to multiply the base by itself
* students need to memorize the rules of powers and exponents to be successful in algebra
* multiplication rule- if the bases are the same we add the exponents
* division rule- if the bases are the same we subtract the exponents
* power to another power- multiply the exponents
* negative exponent- can rewrite as positive exponent by moving power to opposite side of fraction bar
* scientific notation is a method to write very large and very small numbers in an easy to use format based on the power of 10
* to simplify a variable expression we use all the rules of powers and exponents that we can until the expression is written as simple as possible- never leave final answer with negative exponents