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Ratios and fractions

  1. Jul 31, 2014 #1
    Why can ratios be written as fractions?

    if there are 5 men in 20 people the ratio of men to total people is 5:20 which is 1:4.

    But when we write 1/4 it gives 0.25. And 0.25 means the magnitude of each part when 1 is divided into 4 equal parts.

    So how does ratio and fraction give a same meaning? Please explain it to me.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 31, 2014 #2

    Char. Limit

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    Gold Member

    I'm not quite sure what you're asking. A ratio is defined, per Wiktionary, as

    ratio (plural ratios)

    1. A number representing a comparison between two things.
    2. (arithmetic) The relative magnitudes of two quantities (usually expressed as a quotient).
    3. (law) Short for ratio decidendi.

    Clearly, the second definition is the best used here. If there are 5 men in 20 people, then we can say that on average, 0.25, or 25% of all people are men. That's just another way of saying 25 men for every 100 people, though, which is similar to the 5 in 20 example.

    Sorry, I'm probably not making much sense, but the question is an odd one.
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