<img src="https://d5nxst8fruw4z.cloudfront.net/atrk.gif?account=iA1Pi1a8Dy00ym" style="display:none" height="1" width="1" alt="" />

# Factoring by Grouping

## Use associative and commutative properties with factoring

Estimated13 minsto complete
%
Progress
Practice Factoring by Grouping
Progress
Estimated13 minsto complete
%
Factoring by Grouping

What if you had a polynomial expression like 3x26x+2x4\begin{align*}3x^2 - 6x + 2x - 4\end{align*} in which some of the terms shared a common factor but not all of them? How could you factor this expression? After completing this Concept, you'll be able to factor polynomials like this one by grouping.

Fisch Video: Factoring Polynomials by Grouping

### Guidance

Sometimes, we can factor a polynomial containing four or more terms by factoring common monomials from groups of terms. This method is called factor by grouping.

The next example illustrates how this process works.

#### Example A

Factor 2x+2y+ax+ay\begin{align*}2x+2y+ax+ay\end{align*}.

Solution

There is no factor common to all the terms. However, the first two terms have a common factor of 2 and the last two terms have a common factor of a\begin{align*}a\end{align*}. Factor 2 from the first two terms and factor a\begin{align*}a\end{align*} from the last two terms:

2x+2y+ax+ay=2(x+y)+a(x+y)\begin{align*}2x + 2y + ax + ay = 2(x + y) + a(x + y)\end{align*}

Now we notice that the binomial (x+y)\begin{align*}(x + y)\end{align*} is common to both terms. We factor the common binomial and get:

(x+y)(2+a)\begin{align*}(x + y)(2 + a)\end{align*}

#### Example B

Factor 3x2+6x+4x+8\begin{align*}3x^2+6x+4x+8\end{align*}.

Solution

We factor 3x from the first two terms and factor 4 from the last two terms:

3x(x+2)+4(x+2)\begin{align*}3x(x+2)+4(x+2)\end{align*}

Now factor (x+2)\begin{align*}(x+2)\end{align*} from both terms: (x+2)(3x+4)\begin{align*}(x+2)(3x+4)\end{align*}.

Now the polynomial is factored completely.

### Practice

Factor by grouping.

1. 6x29x+10x15\begin{align*}6x^2-9x+10x-15\end{align*}
2. 5x235x+x7\begin{align*}5x^2-35x+x-7\end{align*}
3. 9x29xx+1\begin{align*}9x^2-9x-x+1\end{align*}
4. 4x2+32x5x40\begin{align*}4x^2+32x-5x-40\end{align*}
5. 2a26ab+3ab9b2\begin{align*}2a^2-6ab+3ab-9b^2\end{align*}
6. 5x2+15x2xy6y\begin{align*}5x^2+15x-2xy-6y\end{align*}

### Additional Practice Opportunities (including self-check)

1. Braingenie: Factoring Polynomials by Grouping Terms

### Notes/Highlights Having trouble? Report an issue.

Color Highlighted Text Notes