Question: What is an Algebra ?


Algebra is the branch of mathematics which uses letters and symbols to represent numbers or other mathematical objects, and the relationships between them. The word algebra comes from the Arabic words at al (i.e. the) and jahr (meaning joined together). Algebra is much broader than elementary algebra and can be generalized. In addition to working directly with numbers, algebra covers working with symbols, variables, and set elements. Addition and multiplication are viewed as general operations, and their precise definitions lead to structures such as groups, rings and fields.

Elementary algebra is often part of the curriculum in secondary education and provides an introduction to the basic ideas of algebra, including effects of adding and multiplying numbers, the concept of variables, definition of polynomials, along with factorization and determining their roots.