# How many "tools" do you need when learning basic maths ?

#### porchgirl

I mean you need to know about ,

Composite factors
Prime factors

Greatest common factor
Least common multiple

Is that all there is to know when dealing with basic math ?

I get confused when it goes by a lot more different names like ,
HCF
GCD
LCD

is it all the same ? :ninja:

#### skipjack

Forum Staff
There is a lot more to basic mathematics - too much to list here, but there are plenty of textbooks and online resources available.

HCF stands for Highest Common Factor, whereas GCD stands for Greatest Common Divisor, but they refer to the same thing. The HCF (or GCD) of 24, 60 and 96 is 12.

LCD stands for Lowest Common Denominator. You might also come across LCM (Least Common Multiple) as an alternative. The LCD (or LCM) of 24, 60 and 90 is 360.

#### porchgirl

When solving or simplifying

Arithmetic fractions
Algebraic expressions
Algebraic fractions
Algebraic equations

Are these the most used terms ?

Factor
Composite factors
Prime factors
Greatest common factor
Least common multiple

?:ninja:

#### skipjack

Forum Staff
That probably depends on local conventions. I've never come across "composite factors" and prefer the term "divisor" when I intend it to mean a factor that's a positive integer. Thus, I could assert that a composite positive integer is the product of positive integer powers of its prime divisors.

#### porchgirl

Thanks , The best thing would to be to learn from a book starting with whole numbers , fractions and algebra