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As i'm sure you know a kj is just 1000 joules, the main reason you would use one vs the other would depend on the constants in the equations you're using and the units they're measured in so that they would cancel out correctly and give you an accurate answer.
Typically, you will determine if you need to use J or kJ based on the question. The question may give you a value in kJ, but it can still ask for your answer to use J instead, and vice versa, so all you'd need to do is make the conversion.
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