# Absolute Value

### Absolute Value means ...

... only **how far** a number is from zero:

"6" is 6 away from zero, So the absolute value of 6 is |

More Examples:

- The absolute value of -9 is
**9** - The absolute value of 3 is
**3** - The absolute value of 0 is
**0** - The absolute value of -156 is
**156**

### No Negatives!

So in practice "absolute value" means to remove any negative sign in front of a number, and to think of all numbers as positive (or zero).

### Absolute Value Symbol

To show that you want the absolute value of something, you put "|" marks either side (they are called "bars" and are found on the right side of your keyboard), like these examples:

|-5| = 5 | |7| = 7 |

Sometimes absolute value is also written as "abs()", so **abs(-1) = 1** is the same as **|-1| = 1**

### Subtract Either Way Around

And it doesn't matter which way around you do a subtraction, the absolute value will always be the same:

|8-3| = 5 | |3-8| = 5 |

(8-3 = 5) | (3-8 = -5, and |-5| = 5) |

### More Examples

Here are some more examples of how to handle absolute values:

|-3×6| = 18 | -|-12| = -12 |

(-3×6 = -18, and |-18| = 18) |
(|-12| = 12 and then the first minus gets you -12) |

Learn more at Absolute Value in Algebra