SAT Math Multiple Choice Practice Question 144: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 144

12. If three consecutive odd integers have a sum of -15, the smallest of the three integers equals

A. -7
B. -6
C. -5
D. -4
E. -3

Correct Answer: A


A. If you solve this problem using algebra, you need to let the integers equal x, x + 2, and x + 4. (Do you remember this from Chapter 14?) Adding these expressions gives you 3x + 6 = -15, or x = -7. This answer makes the other numbers -5 and -3, and -7 is the smallest. You can also use reason to figure out this problem: Because the numbers add up to -15, the middle number must be one-third of -15, or -5, and, thus, the other numbers are -7 and -3.

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