Here’s and example of a **SMART MATH** problem for **ALGEBRA.**

**Problem**

**Problem**

What is the value of *a* and *b* in = 20?

- 2, 1
- 4, 1
- 1, 5
- 3, 3
- 4, 3

**The Usual Method**

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One may substitute each option to see which satisfies the equation as follows:

2, 1 => (does not satisfy hence not the answer)

4, 1 => (does not satisfy hence not the answer)

1, 5 => (does not satisfy hence not the answer)

3, 3 => (satisfies hence is the answer)

No need to check as option ‘4’ satisfies the condition.

**(Ans: 4)**

*Estimated Time to arrive at the answer = 60 seconds.*

**Using Technique**

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In = 20, ‘ ’ are mixed fractions which when converted to improper fractions will become .

20 being an integer, should yield an integer, which is possible only if is a multiple of 4 or ‘1’. Since, we do not know the value of ‘1’, we look at the option check for that value of ‘1’, which makes a multiple of 4. The only value possible from the options to make a multiple of 4 is 3. Hence, *a* = *b* = 3.

**(Ans: 4)**

*Estimated Time to arrive at the answer = 15 seconds.*

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