How To Determine If A Fraction Is Greater Or Less Than Another Fraction?

15 Answers

Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
How to determine if a fraction is greater than or less than another fraction?

Like anything else, the way to tell if a fraction is greater or less than another fraction isn’t difficult at all, once you know how. 

The way to do it is this:

  • Take two fractions, for example 5/8 and 5/9.
  • Divide the numerator (the top number) by the denominator (the bottom number) of each fraction and see what answers you get.

So, 5 ÷ 8 = 0.625; and 5 ÷ 9 = 0.556.

Because 0.625 is bigger than 0.556, that means that the first fraction (5/8) is the greater of the two.

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Often these very same people are unaware that they use everyday maths all the time; whether it’s by balancing their home accounts or grocery shopping. In reality, it’s probable that they are really rather good at it.

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The answer lies in taking the mystery out of the subject and making it more accessible. Once a person (usually at school) loses their grip on one aspect of maths, it becomes all too easy to completely fall behind, because many aspects of maths work like a layering system, and that underpinning knowledge is vital.

Make sure that each maths point is thoroughly understood before moving onto the next, and you will be guaranteed that you won’t have the urge to run for the hills.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
If the fraction has a common denominator then you look at the numerator. If it's 5/8, 5 is 3 away from 8 and 5/9, 5 is 4 away from 8 so it would be 5/8.
Kyoko Katayama Profile
Kyoko Katayama answered
1/2 equals 2/4, so 3/4 is bigger.
ray of light Profile
ray of light answered
In order to check which fraction is greater than the other one, you convert them to decimals.
So 5/8 = 0.625
And 5/9 = 0.555
So you see, 0.625 is definitely greater than 0.555.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
How can I determine which fraction is greater or smaller?

Looking at negative fractions does not require you to think a lot harder than any other kind of number. Whenever you are dealing with the number line, in which every number closer to the value of 0 is the smaller number on the positive side of the number line, on the negative side of the number line, the number getting closer to zero is larger.

In the case of fractions, this is still true - you simply have to decide on a means for how to compare the two fractions. The simplest method is to compare the numbers' absolute values.

  • If you compare the absolute value (the value of the numbers, regardless of their signs) of the numbers, 1/4 is smaller than 4/5. By that notion, 1/4 is closer to zero than 4/5, so that means 1/4 is the smaller number.
  • Using a negative sign would imply that -1/4 is larger (because it is still closer to zero on the number line) than -4/5.
  • If you are not sure which fraction is actually larger, you can get a common denominator for each fraction, and then compare their numerators.
So in your example:

You can use a common denominator to compare the two fractions, then the common factor is 20. So, 4/20 is equal to 1/4 and 16/20 is equal to 4/5.

So, if you use negative numbers as an indicator of what number is closer to zero then you see that -4/20 or -1/4 is closer to zero than -16/20 or -4/5.

Remember a number line looks like this:
  • 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 0, -1, -2, -3, -4, -5
Since fractions are simply a smaller part of a number, their part of the number line might look like this:

  • 0, -1/4, -2/4, -3/4, -4/4 (-1)
  • 0, -1/5, -2/5, -3/5, -4/5, -5/5 (-1)
When you use the common denominator, their positions become much clearer in relationship to each other and the number 0 on the number line.

0.0, -1/20, -2/20, -3/20, (-4/20 =  -1/4), -5/20, -6/20, -7/20, -8/20, -9/20, -10/20, -11/20, -12/20, -13/20, -14/20, -15/20, (-16/20 =  -4/5), -17/20, -18/20, -19/20, -20/20 (-1)

Hope that helps.
Oddman Profile
Oddman answered
How to calculate which fraction is greater.

In order to compare these numbers, they need to be expressed over an agreeable common denominator. Amber22 chose 100 for that purpose. You can also choose one that depends on what the comparison is.

1/2 = (2.5)/5 = 6/12 = 4/8
3/5 > (2.5)/5
2/5 < (2.5)/5
5/12 < 6/12
3/8 < 4/8

Thus, 3/5 is the only number on your list that is greater than 1/2.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
1/3 is equivalent to 33%.
2/5 is equivalent to 40%. 

In fractions: 1/3 can be made 5/16 by multiplying the 3 by 5 to make 15, and the 1 also multiplied by 5 makes 5. However the 5 from 2/5 is multiplied by 3 to make the same 15. The 2 is the multiplied by 3 to make 6, thus getting 6/16.

When finding the greater fraction, first find the nearest common number between the two end numbers. Whatever number it takes to multiply the end to equivalency, then multiply the first.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Greater than - because if you cut a pie into 8 pieces and take 5, there's going to be more pie than if you cut it into 9 pieces and take 5.

Let's say you cut your pie into 4ths and took 2 pieces. Then you cut the same-sized pie into 3rds and took 2 pieces. If a fraction has the same numerator, but a different denominator, than the fraction with the lowest denominator wins - and is greatest.
Orsiela Wiese Profile
Orsiela Wiese answered
If you make both the fraction the same denominator of 4; it will look like this: 2/4 and 3/4. Of course 3/4 is bigger, because it needs only 1 part to make it a whole, whereas 2/4 will need 2 parts to make it a whole.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
You can do an easy and commen step. For example, if you have 3 over 9 and another fraction would be 2 over 4, you multiply your fraction into a diagonal line - so you multiply 3x4=12 then 2x9 which is 18 the highest number you get. Then that means your fraction is greater than the other, in this case 2 over 4 is greater than 3 over 9.
J Mogzz Profile
J Mogzz answered
Convert them to a decimal by division and whichever is bigger, that is the greater one. 1/3 is .333 while 1/4 is .25 and 2/7 is.2857 so 1/3 is the greatest, 2/7 is next and 1/4 is the smallest!
amber Jhon Profile
amber Jhon answered
You can find which fraction is greater or lesser by converting them into decimals. To do this, divide the numerator by the denominator:

Which fraction is greater?
  • 1/2 = 0.5
  • 3/5 = 0.6
  • 2/5 = 0.4
  • 5/12 = 0.42
  • 3/8 = 0.37
This shows that the only value which is greater than 1/2 is 3/5.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
No 1/2 inch is bigger. Think about it like this: IF it was 4/8 it would be equal to 1/2. 5/8 is a little bigger.

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