 Mathematics is all about principles, which means these principles have to be understood before anything else. If every maths student out there knew this, solving any king of maths problem would be so much fun.

This crucial fact of maths also affect percents and its applications. Understanding this fact about percents made me saw percents in a more clearer way that is far better than the way I was thought in middle school. This gives me an advantage over other students in my class then. To help other students get this simple percent principle, I will be sharing all that am fortunate to know about percents.

What are percents

Derived from a Latin word “per centum” which means “out of one hundred,” This simply can be defined as a mathematical symbol which represents a ratio of the part of a whole. The whole, in this case, is 100, while the ratio could be anything below 100. And it is expressed with a symbol: %

A good example of percent is all about is If we say “30 percents of students in my class have black hair”  what this simply means is that for every 100 students in my class, 30 have black hair.

Percents can also be changed into decimal or fraction depending on the modality of the problem to the solved. Getting to know this change my general outlook of what percent is all about and how it is been solved.

The relationship between percents and fractions

From my above explanation of what fraction is all about if I say “50% of all the clothes in my wardrobe is black,” it simply means that for every 100 clothes in my wardrobe, 50 is black. From there on, I can translate this to 50/100. With further simplification, this becomes 1/2 which is a proper fraction.

Another example to explain this better is when I say, “5% of the class failed the last maths quiz” Using the same method above to simplify it in the form of a fraction, it becomes 5/100. Simplifying this further, it changes to 1/20. With this simple explanation, we can say that 5% is the same as “one-twentieth”.

The relationship  between percents and decimals

This is also quite simple and straight forward. Here, we will be dividing into decimals instead of fractions. A good example is when I say “10% of all the cars in my garage are blue” To convert this into a decimal, it becomes 10  ÷ 100 = 0.10

How to apply percents?

The explanation above doesn’t just stop there, percents can be used to solve all kinds of mathematical problems. To further explain this, I will be sharing one or two examples.

Example 1: 20% of 500 Oranges are bad. How many oranges are bad? From our previous knowledge of the relationship between percents and fractions, the first step to take is to convert the 20% into fraction “20% =  20/100” and then multiply by the total number of oranges. 20/100 × 500. Simplifying this further, we get = 100. Which simply means that 100 out of a total number of 500 oranges are bad.

With the above explanation, I believe you should by now have a better understanding of what percent is all about. As we all know percents are a big part of the math sections of the SHSAT. You can prepare for the SHSAT at Caddell Prep if you need further help.