What is a Monomial?

Before we get into all the fun things we can do with monomials, we better first define a monomial! It sounds like a strange word, but let's look at it's prefix.

Monomial - the prefix mono means one.

A monomial is one term.

A monomial can be any of the following:

In the equations unit, we said that terms were separated by a plus sign or a minus sign. Therefore:


A monomial CANNOT contain a plus sign (+) or a minus (-) sign.

Let's take a look at one more example.

Which is NOT a Monomial?

Of the following three terms, which one is NOT a monomial?

1. 9xyz

2. (3xy)2

3. 2x+2y3


Did you pick number 3?

If so, you are correct! 2x+2y3 is not a monomial because there is a plus sign. In this case, we are adding 2 monomials!

Ok... I think you are ready to move on to multiplying monomials!

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