**Texas**** College**

**Volume 6, Number 1,
Pages 1─17**

**Problems with Rational Exponents in Elementary
Mathematics**

**Terutake Abe and Firooz Khosraviyani**

**2000 MSC:** 97D70,
97C90, 00A99.

**Key words:**
Rational exponent, rational power, fractional power, power functions, root
functions, set-valued power functions, set-valued root functions, order of
operations, misconceptions.

**Abstract:** The
concept and definitions of the common power notation used in elementary mathematics
will be discussed with a focus on formalizing an introductory definition and
avoiding misconceptions by students and teachers alike.

Department of Mathematical & Physical Sciences, Texas A&M International University, Laredo, TX 78041

Email addresses: tabe@tamiu.edu and FiroozKh@TAMIU.edu