Common Unit Conversions

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  • 0:01 Unit Conversions
  • 0:41 Inches & Feet
  • 2:09 Feet & Yards
  • 2:47 Quarts & Gallons
  • 3:35 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Yuanxin (Amy) Yang Alcocer

Amy has a master's degree in secondary education and has taught math at a public charter high school.

Watch this video lesson, and you will become a pro at converting between inches and feet, between feet and yards, and between quarts and gallons. Learn the special numbers involved in each conversion.

Unit Conversions

Unit conversions are essential in everyday living. They are also essential in math problems. If you are given a problem in feet but your formula requires inches, then you need to be able to quickly convert, or change, your feet into inches.

This is the topic of this video lesson. You will become a pro at three very common unit conversions. We have included inches and feet, feet and yards, and quarts and gallons. These are common conversions. Of course, there are others that you can research later, but for this video lesson, we will focus on just these three.

Inches and Feet

So, the first is inches and feet. Where do you see these types of measurements? You see them whenever you go to the doctor's and he measures your height. You most often will see your height written in both feet and inches. But if you had to use your height in a math problem, you could only use one or the other; you can't use both together. So, you need to convert your inches to feet or your feet to inches depending on the problem. Let's see how we can do this.

To convert feet to inches, we multiply by 12 because there are 12 inches to every foot. Don't ask me why there are 12 inches to a foot. I don't know. There just are. And you will remember it the more often you use it. And if you keep a ruler handy, you will see that there are 12 inches in a foot. So, for example, two feet becomes 2 * 12 = 24 inches.

To convert inches to feet we need to go the other way; instead of multiplying by 12, we now need to divide by 12. So, six inches becomes 6 / 12 = 0.5 feet. Be careful that you don't just add a dot between the feet and the inches. That would give you an incorrect answer. You need to divide your inches by 12 to get the decimal portion of your feet. So, five feet and three inches becomes 5 + (3 / 12) = 5.25 feet.

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