One of the most common ways to simplify an expression is to combine like terms. Numeric terms may be combined, and any terms with the same variable part may be combined.
Example:
Consider the expression 2 + 7x + 12  3x  5.
The numeric like terms are the numbers 2, 12, and 5.
The variable like terms are 7x and 3x.
Combining the numeric like terms, we have 2 + 12  5 = 14  5 = 9.
Combining the variable like terms, we have 7x  3x = 4x,
Therefore, the expression 2 + 7x + 12  3x  5 simplifies to 9 + 4x.
Directions: Solve the following equations. First simplify and then find the value of the variable.
