11.8. Complex Fractions

Fractions that have only one fraction line are called simple fractions. Fractions with more than one fraction line are called complex fractions. We show how to simplify complex fractions in the following examples.

Example 58:

Simplify the complex fraction

Solution: We can simplify this fraction by multiplying numerator and denominator by the least common denominator for all of the individual fractions. The denominators are 2, 3, and 4, so the LCD is 12. Multiplying, we obtain

Example 59:

Simplify the complex fraction

Solution: The LCD for the two small fractions a/b and b/a is ab. Multiplying, we obtain

or, in factored form,

TI-89 calculator solution for Example 59. We again use comDenom from the Algebra menu.

11.8.1. Exercise 8 Complex Fractions

Simplify. Leave your answers as improper fractions.


  1. A car travels a distance d1 at ...

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