Ratios, Rates,and Unit Rates

Ratios, rates, and unit rates are quantative comparisions between two items.


A ratio is a comparison of two or more numbers.

Ratios compare total to total, part to total, and part to part.

Fractions, decimals, and percents are all considered ratios.

Ratios are usually written in one of 3 ways as a fraction, with the words “to” or “out of”, and sometimes with the “:” symbol.


A rate is a ratio comparing two numbers with different units. Speed is an example of rate (miles per hour).

Unit Rate

A unit rate tells the rate in lowest terms, or the amount for 1. (speed and prices are usually represented by unit rates: 50 miles/ hr  OR $5/ lb)

Unit Cost

The cost of an item represented by a unit rate.

Learn about Equivalent Ratios

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