How To Convert A Fraction Into A Decimal
The quickest way that you can transform a fraction into a decimal is by dividing the number on top (numerator) by the bottom number (denominator) using a calculator.
Try this on your calculator.
1/4 = 1 ÷ 4
The answer should be 0.25.
The manual way of converting that fraction into a decimal number also involves division - the manual kind.
Let's take our previous example and use the manual division method. Like the first method, we divide 1 by 4. First we write it this way:
Next, since we cannot find how many 4s there are in 1, we add the decimal point and a zero.
Now that we have 10, we just answer the question, "how many 4s are there in 10?" After that, we multiply our answer by our divisor (4) and put the answer (8) below 10, and subtract it from 10. Since, 10 minus 8 results to 2 and there are no 4s in 2, we add another 0 as you can see below.
Then, we find out how many 4s there are in 20. The answer is 5 and we write that next to 2, above the second 0 we added. Then, we multiply 5 by 4, and subtract it from 20, as shown below.
This means that 1/4 = 0.25.
It is not unusual to encounter fractions that when converted to decimals, end up with many decimal places. An example of this is 1
, which results to 0.3333333333~. To shorten it, decimals are rounded off to the nearest hundredths place, unless there's a previously specified number of decimal places. In our previous example, 5 in 0.25 is in the hundredth place, so when we round of 0.3333333333~ it will become 0.33.
Now, if the 3rd place after the decimal point is 5 or greater, the hundredth place is rounded off to the next hundredth. For example, 0.465 rounded off to 0.47.
Here are a couple more examples:
0.236 if rounded off to the nearest hundredth becomes 0.24
0.6457 if rounded off to the nearest thousandth becomes 0.646