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I don't think it is necessary for all problems. I think you only have to do scientific notation in order to round your answer to the proper amount of sig figs to meet the requirements for sig figs for certain problems. Also, if its a really large number then you might have to do scientific notation, unless otherwise stated.
I'm pretty sure it's okay to do it when the number is quite large too. so if the answer is 18,000,000 you can always put that as 1.80x10^7 it doesn't have to be only when the number is really small but someone please correct me if im wrong
sarahtang4B wrote:somebody else asked this today in my discussion, the TA said you usually put something into scientific notation if the number is 10^-2 or smaller, and make sure you put the correct significant figures!
The number of sig figs used in the final answer is determined by the smallest number of sig figs correct? For example, if you had 3 sig figs and 4 sig figs, then your final answer would have 3 sig figs?
Use scientific notation when dealing with very big numbers. Otherwise, it will be a lot more difficult to do multiplication and division without it. In addition, always round the number to the least amount of sig figs in the problem. This youtube vid on scientific notation really help me understand it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dme-G4rc6NI
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