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Tips for calculating faster

Tips for calculating faster

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Published by Rushiraj Patel

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Published by: Rushiraj Patel on Feb 08, 2011
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Calculating Faster

Speed in solving questions is of crucial importance if one wants to crack the MBA entrance exams. In fact, the only two skills tested in the Data Interpretation section are those of understanding data or interpreting information from raw data and calculating fast. In this article we will look at the basic groundwork you must do before you can even think of doing calculations involving complex divisions within 20 seconds. One needs to thoroughly learn: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Tables up to 30 × 30 Squares up to 30 Cubes up to 15 Square roots up to 10 Cube roots up to 5

6. Reciprocal percentage equivalents up to 30
It seems like a very tedious and time consuming task. However, it is not as tough as it seems. Try this -- what is 7 × 8? I bet anyone would have answered 56. Now, what is 14 × 8? Even if I don't know the tables, I can understand it would be twice of 7 × 8, i.e. twice of 56, i.e. 112. Even though one did not know table of 14, one could have arrived at the answer within couple of seconds. Thus, except tables of prime numbers, i.e. 13, 17, 19, 23 and 29 all other tables till 30 can be done in this way if one knows the tables till 12. Reciprocal Percentage Equivalents Reciprocal percentage equivalents are the reciprocals of numbers 1 to 30 in percentages, e.g. the reciprocal of 3 is 0.3333 or 33.33%. Reciprocal percentage equivalent of 5 is 20%, of 6 is 16.66% and so on. Reciprocal percentage equivalents are an absolute must for one to crack quantitative section. Not only do they immensely help in division but also in many quant questions. So be sure to learn them by heart. You can also make and use flashcards to help you in memorizing them. Memorising Reciprocal Percentage Equivalents Let's see how reciprocals can be memorized. Almost everyone knows that reciprocal of 2 is 50%, of 3 is 33.33% and of 5 is 20%. If reciprocal of 2 is 50%, the reciprocal of 4 is half of 50%…25%? The reciprocal of 8 will be half of 25%...12.5%. Similarly, reciprocal of 16 will be 6.25%. Also if I know reciprocal of 3 as 33.33%, I can also conclude reciprocal of 6, 9 will be 16.66% and 11.11% respectively. Thus, from 1 to 10, one has to only mug up reciprocal of 7 which is 14.28% (simple two times 7 is 14 and two times 14 is 28…thus 14.28). If reciprocal of 9 is 11.11, reciprocal of 11 is 09.090909. Reciprocal of 9 is composed of 11s and reciprocal of 11 is composed of 09s. Reciprocal of 12 will be half of reciprocal of 6, i.e. half of 16.66%, i.e. 8.33%. Thus, we see that except for prime numbers, we can very easily remember the reciprocals of all others. Thus, effectively we need to mug up reciprocals of only 7, 13, 17, 19, 23 and 29. Some other numbers that can be remembered easily and the methods are: • Reciprocal of 20 is 5%. Reciprocal of 21 is 4.76% and of 19 is 5.26%. Thus, we can easily remember the reciprocals of 19, 20, 21 as 5.25%, 5, 4.75% respectively.

Reciprocal of 18 is half of 11.4 The best part of this method is that I have the liberty of deciding how accurate an answer do I require. Knowing reciprocal percentage equivalent. the complement of 0.8% c. .6. 130. What will 10% of 3267 be… 326. So my answer will be slightly more than 4. 466. 4. i.35% (same digits but order is different) Reciprocal of 22 is half of 09.66% and hence (c) is the obvious choice. e.4% Just focus on denominator.545454%.e.e. e. the answer can directly be found by dividing 3267 by 7. Factorisation in its basic sense has been used by many of us. 84/9 will be 9.e. . Then what would 4% be… 128 for 32 and 2. one must consciously use the process of elimination immediately after finishing reading the questions. i. I should have thought of an even better factorisation as 14. 10% of the denominator would be 728. this will force the person to have a look at the alternatives.25% of 3267 will be 465.e.68 for 0.272727.g.e.5 + 25/320. 70% of the denominator will be more than 4900 i.7 Factorisation can also be used in division. Thus. 11/12 is nothing but 1 – 1/12. 457. Thus. Let's see how we can use this for even more tougher problems. 63.7 And 1%… obviously 32.e. the answer will be definitely less than 70% (since 7* 10% i. Since the numerator is less than 4860.91666. And compare it with the time it can save and the confidence it leads to. 22/23 will be 0.4% d.08333 which is 0.55555%. Factorisation Factorisation is a process which goes a long way in reducing the calculations required. i. consists of only 5s. more than the numerator) and also answer will be more than 60% (since 6*10% will be around 4360).0909%. if I know 1/23 is 0.0435.g.3 If I want an even more accurate answer. e. i. consists of 4s and 5s.03% and since 14.e. but if we use a smart approach.. are a. Let's say we want to find 14. 357.67. 14% will be 326.6% b.67. one must make sure that he treats the alternatives as also a part of the questions. if 1% is 32. i.45% (i.e.e 8. i.1111%. 2/3 of 7280 will be 4860. .6.e.. 345 in order) and reciprocal of 23 is 4.28% – 0. I know for sure the decimal part will be only 0909. 5.15 14.e. i. it is hardly anything. If I have to find 4835/7280 is of what percentage and the alternatives to choose from.25% will be 1/4 of 32. If I have to find 1465/320. I would write it as (1280 + 185)/320 which is nothing but 4 + (160 + 25)/320. Thus. i.28% is nothing but 1/7. or 1818… or 2727… or 3636…. 71. if alternatives are wide apart.9565. i.25% of 3267. For making use of approximations. and can be found out in a jiffy One can also calculate any fraction of the type (n-1)/n (n <= 30) within two seconds if one knows the reciprocal percentage equivalent. . we would do 17 × 20 + 17. Similarly. the answer choice has to be less than 2/3 or 66. i. We have factorised 21 as 20 + 1. . I may stop the process in-between.• • • Reciprocal of 29 is 3. if we want to find 17 × 21. 59.6 Let's see another example where I can save a lot of calculations. Thus. 66.6 Thus.7 + 130.. which is 4.6. the work may seem to be a huge task.e. if any calculation has 9 in the denominator.5 and less than 4.g. then 0.e.

e 4 × 8 = 32.e. which is equivalent to borrowing 100 (because we are borrowing from the hundred's digit of the answer). i. Please note the right part will be 08 and not simply 8. Squaring of numbers ending with 5: Multiply the number formed after ignoring the 5 in unit's place with the next integer to it. This is the left part of answer.e. 64 add to which the carry over 3. If a number is in-between 30 to 80: Find out the 'surplus' (or for that matter the 'deficit') with 50 as base. i. The answer is 8924. like 20.g. 652 is 6 × 7 with 25 appended to it.e. Let's take an example: 105 × 107 Here the base is 100 and the 'surplus' is 5 and 7 for the two numbers. If a number is in-between 70 to 130: The right-hand part of the answer is same as above with the surplus being calculated with . i. 112 × 113. Only thing to keep in mind is double the left-hand part (because 20 is twice of 10) before adding the carry-over if any. The left part will be 92 + (–3) or 97 + (–8). –32. The answer will be found in two parts — the right-hand should have only two digits (because base is 100) and will be the product of the surpluses. But as per calculations for base 10. 4225. i. i. The left part will be 96 + 8 – 1 (the borrowed one) or 108 + (–4) – 1. 103.e. 13225.e. 3249 382 is 25 + (–12) // (–12)2 i. 30 . There can also be a carry-over from the right-hand part. i. The left-hand part will be one multiplicand plus the surplus of the other multiplicand. Thus. the left part will be (–8) × (–3). How about 96 × 108? The right part will now be (–4) × 8.e. 50 .e. i. 1000 or so on.e positive 24. But the right part should have only 2 digits. i. Thus. 126. right-hand part will have only one digit. The right part will be product of surpluses from 10. The answer will be 10368. e. The left part will be twice of 24 + 8. Thus.e. So 3 will be carried over. 35. etc. the answer is 672. The answer will be 12656.e.e. The left part is 25 + Surplus + Carry-over (if any) 572 is 25 + 7 // 72. To take care of the negative we will borrow 1 from the left part. The right part of the answer is the square of this surplus. The same process can be done with other bases as well. the right-hand part will be 5 × 7. 100. e. For 102 × 104 the answer will be 10608.e. just remember that the right part will have only 2 digits. A. The left part of the answer in this case will be 105 + 7 or for that matter 107 + 5 i. 1 will be carried over to the left part and the right part will be only 56. 156. i. 89. Can we use it for 92 × 97? Yes. i. 200. The right part will be 12 × 13. the right part will be 100 – 32 = 68. 24 × 28 Using base as 20 (which is twice of 10) do calculations as if you would do with base 10. Thus. Corrolaries to base multiplication: Base multiplication can be used with other bases as well. In this case there is a carry-over of 1 from right part to left part. The left part will be 112 + 13 + 1 (the carry-over). 1152 is 11 × 12 with 25 appended at the end. In this case. B. Append a 25 as the right part. 112.Vedic Mathematics Multiplying by base method: This is applicable to multiplications where the numbers are close to a base like 10. Squaring of other numbers: This method assumes that you are through with all squares of numbers up to 30. all else will be carried over to left part. 500. i. 1444.e.g. The answer is 11235. i.

221. This is the left part of the answer. 1157625 9983: This is a case with base 1000 and deficit 2. i. complement of 425 is 575. the right part of the answer is the product of unit's place (no restriction on number of digits). The answer is 12 × 13 // 4 × 6. i. our answer will be in three parts. 1000. So the answer is 455999544. Multiplication when one multiplicand consists of only 9s: Let's do this with an example 3425 × 999.e.: In this case. . i. the answer is 3421575.e. So the answer is 323640463563. So ignoring six digits from right we get 0. 994011992 Multiplication: a.e. 12769. Please note that surplus can also be a deficit. the answer is 998 + (–4) // 3 × (–2)2 // (–2)3 i. The right-most and the next part will have two digits each if base is 100 and three digits if base is 1000.g.e 5476 Cubing of numbers close to 100. Another example 3236437 × 99999. i. Thus. 742 is 74 + (–26) // (–26)2 i.e. Subtract this 4 from the whole multiplicand. all we have to do is take care of the sign. i. in this case 3.e. The answer in parts will be: The number + Twice the surplus // Thrice the surplus square // Surplus cube.e.e.e. etc. Add 1 to this integer (always 1) to get 4. When the sum of the digits of unit's place is 10 b. To get the right part of the answer. 15624. ignore three rightmost digits and take the remaining integer. subtracting this from the whole multiplicand we get 3236404. 994 // 012 // (–008) i. 999544. i. One more example.e. 13 × 17 is 1 × 2 // 3 × 7. as usual.e. 3425 to get 3421. Ignoring five digits from the right we get 32. Right part is the complement of 000456. Another example 124 × 126. 48 // 676. 1053 is 105 + 10 // 3 × 25 // 53.. There are five 9s. i. When the rest of the digits are same In this case. The right part is complement of 36437. take the complement of the three righmost digits of the multiplicand i. e. adding 1 we get 33. 456 × 999999. the rest will be carried over if needed. The left-hand part of the answer is the given number itself + Surplus 1132 is 113 + 13 // 132 i.. Thus.respect to 100. 63563. adding 1 we get 1. Since there are three 9s in the multiplicand.e. subtracting from multiplicand we get 455 as left part. There are six 9s. The left part is the remaining number (after eliminating the unit's digit) multiplied to the next integer.

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