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About rounding off for significant figures

  1. Jul 5, 2008 #1
    Let's say I want to round the number 3.549 off to two significant figures. Do I have to round the 4 to 5 first, or do I just round the 5 (in the one-tenths place) to 5, since the one-hundreths digit is 4? If I do it by the first method, it would be 3.6, while the 2nd method gives 3.5. Which is right?

  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 5, 2008 #2


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    It should be 3.5. You look at the digit which is one-tenth the value of the previous one on the left. The significant values should be the digits in the largest tens/tenth places, and then you round up/down the digit which are next to it.
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