Linear EquatIons Word Problems worksheet with solutIons

Linear Equations Word Problems Worksheet with Solutions

The first equation family that many students learn about is linear equations. Linear equations have many applications in the real-world, which can make for a really great set of word problems! 

As a student studying algebra, you will encounter many linear equations word problems. That’s why I have put together this linear equations word problems worksheet with solutions!

My hope is that this linear equation word problems worksheet and answer key help you deepen your understanding of linear equations and linear systems!

What Are Linear Equations?

A linear equation is an algebraic equation where the highest power on the variable is one. When graphed, a linear equation will produce a straight line.

There are a few ways that we can write linear equations, with two of the most common being slope-intercept form and standard form.

Slope-intercept form is best way to identify the slope of the line and the y-intercept of the line. In general, the equation of a line in slope-intercept form is written as:

$$y=ax+b$$

In this form, a represents the slope of the line and b represents the y-intercept of the line.

Equations of lines in standard form are easy to recognize because it is a uniformly recognized form of a line. Standard form allows for easy comparison of coefficients. When two linear equations are in standard form, you can quickly compare the coefficients of x and y.

In general, the standard form of a line is written as:

$$Ax+By=C$$

Note that A and B do not represent the slope of the line or the y-intercept in this form. Instead, A and B are simply constants.

Solving Linear Equations

Any set of word problems relating to linear equations will ask you to solve an equation of some sort. However, there are many different types of solving equations problems that you will encounter as you explore linear equations word problems.

Let’s take a look at a few different types to make sure you know what to expect when you check out the linear equation word problems worksheet with solutions below.

Solving Two-Step Equations and Multi-Step Equations

One of the simplest equation problems that you can solve is a two-step equation. A two-step equation requires you to perform just two steps in order to determine the unique solution to the linear equation.

The first step is to identify the side of the equation with the unknown variable. Your goal will be to isolate this variable (or get it by itself). Consider the following example:

$$9=2x-5$$

In this example, the variable is on the right-hand side of the equation. To isolate x, we “undo” the operations on the right-hand side of the equation using inverse operations. This just means doing whatever the opposite operation is.

We can apply order of operations in reverse to start with the subtraction and then deal with the multiplication. Adding 5 to both sides and then dividing by 2 will result in:

$$\begin{split} 9+5&=2x-5+5 \\ \\ 14 &= 2x \\ \\ \frac{14}{2} &= \frac{2x}{2} \\ \\ 7 &= x \end{split} $$

This shows that the value of the unknown variable here is x = 7. This is a unique solution that will satisfy the equation.

If you want to learn more about finding the solution of linear equations and explore multi-step equations that use the distributive property, check out these equation solving worksheets!

Systems of Linear Equations

Systems of linear equations are another type of problem that you will see on the linear equations word problems worksheet linked below. A system of linear equations involves two (or more!) linear equations that intersect in some way. 

There are a few different ways that linear equations can intersect:

  • Once at a single point of intersection
  • Never as a result of the lines being parallel 
  • Always as a result of the lines being on top of one another

When solving a system of linear equations, your goal is to determine both unknown variables. If the lines intersect, the solution to the system will be the point of intersection for the lines.

When given a linear equation, we can find the point of intersection between it and a second equation using a few different methods. I made a video on the substitution method and a video on the elimination method to help you understand these strategies for solving systems before you apply them to word problems involving systems of equations.

one linear equation being substituted into a second equation

What Are Linear Equation Word Problems?

A linear equation word problem involves a real-world situation or scenario that can be solved by setting up and solving linear equations. The equations that are used model the relationships between different quantities in the real-world scenario. 

The topics of these problems vary, ranging from applications in science and physics (ie. calculate the speed of the boat) to business applications (ie. how many sales are required to break even?). The problems that you encounter will also vary in depth and difficulty. 

In my teaching experience, students tend to struggle with word problems because it isn’t always immediately clear what is being asked.  I have seen many students feel very confident in their equation solving skills, yet they still struggle when it comes to solving linear equation word problems.

One reason for this is that you aren’t always given equations from the start while solving word problems.

Tips for Solving Linear Equation Word Problems

During my time as a high school math teacher, I have come across a few tips that I think will help you solve linear equation word problems successfully.

To begin, the first step should always be to define two variables. Read the question carefully and think about the quantities involved. Use variables to represent these quantities.

The second step should be writing an equation that models the scenario. Depending on the problem, you may need to write a second equation as well.

Lastly, think about what the problem is asking you to find. 

For example, are you looking for the values of two unknown variables? If so, you are likely going to be setting up and solving a system of linear equations.

‚ÄčIf you are being asked for the value of a single variable, the chances are you will be solving a single linear equation.

Linear Equations Word Problems Worksheet with Solutions

Now that you have a basic understanding of the concepts involved in solving linear equations word problems, it’s time to try a few!

My goal here is to provide you with a worksheet that you can use to practice and feel confident that you understand linear equations word problems!

While I was writing this worksheet, I made sure to include a wide variety of problems that range in difficulty. You will see a few simpler problems involving a two-step equation or multi-step equations, but you will also see a few problems that involve systems of linear equations.

After solving each word problem, be sure to check the answer key to verify that you fully understand the process used to set up the problem and solve it. Reflecting on your understanding is an important part of developing comfort with any given math concept!

Click below to download the linear equations word problems worksheet with solutions!

Using This Linear Equation Word Problems Worksheet

Being able to read a real-world algebra problem and set up a linear equation (or a system of linear equations) to solve it is a very challenging skill. In my experience as a math teacher, many students struggle with this concept, even if they fully understand the mathematics that the problem requires.

This is the main reason that I put together this linear equation word problems worksheet with solutions. My goal is to provide you with a set of word problems that you can use to check your understanding of solving linear equations in the real-world.

I hope you found this practice worksheet helpful as you continue your studies of algebra and linear equations!

If you are looking for more linear equations math worksheets in PDF formats, check out my collection of solving linear inequalities worksheets and this linear inequality word problems worksheet.

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