Best Answer:
I am your college professor that you requested, with a doctorate in Mathematics. I will break this down as simply as possible and end this debate as approx. 10 students have already asked me this today.

The problem as it is written is 6÷2(1+2) , the ÷ cannot be substituted with a fraction bar because they have different ranks on the order of operations. It is an illegal math move to do this. The bar ranks with parentheses, ÷ is interchangeable with *. therefore the problem must be solved as 6÷2(1+2) NOT 6 (over) 2(1+2) we do the parentheses first, so 6÷2(3), the parentheses are now no longer relevant, because the number inside is in it's simplest form. Every single number has implied parentheses around it.

6÷2(3)

(6) ÷(2)(3)

6÷2*3,

or even converting the division to multiplication by a reciprocal (a legal math move)

(6)(1 (over) 2)(3)

are all correct ways to write this problem and mean exactly the same thing. Using pemdas, where md and as are interchangeable, we work from left to right, so (3)(3) or

3*3= 9

Just because something is implied rather than written does not give it any special rank in the order of operations.

The problem in it's simplest form, with nothing implied would look like this:

(1+1+1+1+1+1 (over) 1) ÷ (1+1 (over) 1) * ((1(over) 1) + (1+1 (over) 1))

From here, nothing is implied, This again, works out to 9.

If the symbol '/' was used this whole debate would be ambiguous since that symbol can mean "to divide by" or it could mean a fraction bar.

HOWEVER, because the ÷ symbol is used, it can not be changed to mean a fraction bar because that would change the order of operations and thus the whole problem, you can't change a symbol to mean something because you want to, in doing so you are changing the problem.

Once and for all, the answer is 9.

Hopefully some of my students see this so I can stop answering this question.

End of debate... hopefully.

Source(s):
Doctorate, 9 years teaching experience.

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