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What do powers mean, again?

Would the student have made this mistake if she were just given a^2 to evaluate? If yes, then what’s the misconception. If no, then what’s going on?

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3 replies on “What do powers mean, again?”

I agree, it is odd that 8^3 seemed to pose no problem but 5^2 did. It is probably due to attention, but might be a “visualisation” misconception: when visualising “five squared” we see “two fives” which are “ten”? Or perhaps I’m looking just a little too hard 🙂

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