Types of Fractions

Fractions are one of the most common terms used in Maths, to determine the parts of a whole object. There are basically six types of fractions such as:

  1. Proper fraction
  2. Improper fraction
  3. Mixed fraction
  4. Like Fractions
  5. Unlike Fractions
  6. Equivalent fractions

The types of fractions are classified based on the numerator and denominator of the fraction. We are going to discuss here in this article all the types along with definition.

In earlier classes, we came across the concept of whole numbers for measuring quantities. However, in real-life scenarios all the measured quantities cannot be perfect whole numbers, we may have to deal with parts and portions of whole things, and this is where the concept of fraction comes into the picture.

Different Types of Fraction

A fraction can be considered to be the ratio of two numbers. The upper number is called Numerator, and the lower part is known as the Denominator. When a whole of something is divided into the number of parts, then each part is referred to as a fraction.  A typical example of how the concept of fraction works is illustrated in the below figure.

Types Of Fractions

Consider another example, a WHOLE pizza is divided into EIGHT PIECES that form the fraction, where one piece of the whole pizza is represented as 1/8, where 1 is the numerator and 8 is the denominator.

Fraction

Proper Fraction

A fraction where the numerator is less than the denominator, then it is known as a proper fraction.

i.e., Numerator < Denominator

Proper Fraction

Note:

  • The value of proper fraction after further simplification is always less than 1.

Improper Fraction

A fraction where the numerator is greater than the denominator, then it is known as an improper fraction

i.e., Numerator > Denominator

Improper Fraction

Note:

  • All the natural numbers can be represented in the form of fractions, where the denominator is always equal to 1.
  • The simplification of improper fraction results in the value which is equal or greater than 1, but not less than 1.

Mixed Fraction

A mixed fraction is the combination of a natural number and fraction. It is basically an improper fraction

Mixed Fraction

Note:

  • Mixed fractions can always be converted into a proper fraction.
  • An improper fraction can be converted into a mixed fraction.
  • A mixed fraction is always greater than 1.

Like Fractions

The fractions which have the same denominators are called like fractions.

For example: 1/2, 3/2, 5/2, 7/2 are like fractions

The simplification of such fractions is easy, as all the denominators here are same. Suppose we need to add all the above like fractions, then;

1/2 + 3/2 + 5/2 + 7/2 = (1+3+5+7)/2 = 16/2 = 8

Unlike Fractions

The fractions which have unequal denominators or different denominators are called unlike fractions.

For example: 1/2, 1/3, 1/4, 1/5, are unlike fractions.

Simplication for such fractions is a little lengthy method since we need to factorise the denominator first and then simply them (in case of addition and subtraction).

  • Suppose, we have to add 1/2 and 1/3. Then first we will find the LCM of 2 and 3 which is equal to 6.
  • Now we need to multiply 1/2 by 3 and 1/3 by 2, both in numerator and denominator.
  • The fractions become: 3/6 and 2/6.
  • Now if we add 3/6 and 2/6, we get;
  • 3/6+2/6 = 5/6

Equivalent Fractions

When two or more fractions have same result after simplification to they represent the same portion of the whole, then such fractions are equal to each other and are called equivalent fractions.

For example: 1/2 and 2/4 are equivalent.

1/3 and 3/9 are equivalent.

Examples

Let us see some examples here based on the fraction’s types.

  • Examples of Proper Fractions:  2/3, 2/4, 2/5, 1/2. 4/7, 7/9, etc. (Numerator < Denominator)
  • Examples of Improper Fractions: 3/2, 4/2, 5/2, 7/4, 9/7, 8/5, etc. (Numerator > Denominator)
  • Examples of Mixed Fractions: example of Mixed fraction etc. (Combination of proper and improper fractions)

For a better visual understanding of the concept, please watch the videos on our youtube channel or download the BYJU’S app.

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