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What Is a Factor Pair?

What Is a Factor Pair?
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  • 0:05 Definition of a Factor Pair
  • 0:46 Pairing Up
  • 1:37 Examples
  • 2:24 Zero - A Special Case
  • 2:50 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Joseph Vigil
In this lesson, we'll review factors and products before learning about factor pairs. We'll then view a few examples of finding the factor pairs of different products. After, you can test your knowledge in a brief quiz.

Definition of a Factor Pair

Let's say a mother in your neighborhood hires you to babysit for $75 a night, and you can babysit four nights of the week. Of course, to figure out your weekly income, we would multiply the nightly income by the number of nights you can work:

75 * 4 = 300

You'll make $300 in one week! Not bad.

Factors are the numbers you multiply together. In this multiplication sentence, 75 and 4 are the factors. 300 is the product, which is the answer we get when we multiply two factors together.

So, in this multiplication sequence, 3 * 4 = 12, 3 and 4 are the factors, and 12 is the product.

Pairing Up

Factor pairs are pairs of factors we multiply together to get a certain product. Let's go back to our second multiplication sentence: 3 * 4 = 12.

4 and 3 is one factor pair that can give us a product of 12. But we can also write the following multiplication sentences that give a product of 12:

  • 1 * 12 = 12
  • 2 * 6 = 12

So, the factor pairs that will give us a product of 12 are 1 and 12, 2 and 6, and 3 and 4.

Generally speaking, the larger a number is, the more factor pairs it will have. This isn't true for prime numbers because their only factor pairs are 1 and the number itself. For example, 937 is a large number, but it's also a prime number. So, its only factor pair is 1 and 937.

Examples

Let's determine the factor pairs for 40. We can write the following multiplication sentences to get a product of 40:

  • 1 * 40 = 40
  • 2 * 20 = 40
  • 4 * 10 = 40
  • 5 * 8 = 40

So, 40's factor pairs are 1 and 40; 2 and 20; 4 and 10; 5 and 8.

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