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Ambiguous? "How many odd numbers are BETWEEN 1000 & 9999?"

Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by cuyocksol, Jun 18, 2019.

  1. cuyocksol

    cuyocksol New commenter

    I'm new to maths teaching, sorry for such a basic question. Tried Googling it, couldn't find an answer to my query.

    In a Pearson revision guide I found a question which I simplify as "How many odd numbers are there between 1000 & 9999" - now as an English teacher I'd say that 'between' clearly means NOT including 1000 & 9999, but the book's answer has included 9999. My instinct is that the question would be clearer if it said "from... to...".

    What do you think?
  2. mistercorzi1

    mistercorzi1 New commenter

    I think this is a poorly worded question. There is ambiguity . Since Maths is a precise language statements like this are usually appended with "exclusive" or "inclusive" eg "The set of real numbers between a and b inclusive"
  3. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    I think most would agree that the question you quote is a little ambiguous. In an exam, I think you can be fairly sure that it would be non-ambiguous, for example by saying "between 1000 and 10000". Mathematicians sometimes use "strictly between", but not usually at school level.
  4. gainly

    gainly Star commenter

    I'd agree the question is ambiguous and I think either answer i.e. including or excluding 9999 should be accepted. Often it is made clear by stating inclusive or exclusive in the question, but frustum's suggestion is even better.

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