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# Measurement for Praxis II ParaPro Test Prep Study Guide (page 3)

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### Converting Units in the Metric System

An easy way to convert within the metric system is to move the decimal point either to the right or to the left, because the conversion factor is always ten or a power of ten. Remember to multiply when changing from a larger unit to a smaller unit. Divide when changing from a smaller unit to a larger unit.

When multiplying by a power of ten, move the decimal point to the right, because the number becomes larger. When dividing by a power of ten, move the decimal point to the left, because the number becomes smaller. Use the table on page 139 to see how many places to move to the left or right.

Example

Change 2 kilometers to meters.

You are changing a larger unit to a smaller unit, so the number must get bigger. You can move the decimal point three places to the right or solve as shown below:

2 kilometers = ? meters

2 × 1,000 meters per km = 2,000 meters

Therefore, 2 kilometers equals 2,000 meters

Example

Change 520 grams to kilograms.

Changing meters to kilometers requires moving from smaller units to larger units and, thus, requires that the decimal point move to the left. Beginning at the ones unit (for grams), note that the kilo heading is three places away. Therefore, the decimal point will move three places to the left. Move the decimal point from the end of 520 to the left three places. That means you need to place the decimal point before the 5: 0.520.

The answer is 520 grams = 0.520 kilograms

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