A Step-by-Step Solution Methodology for Mathematical Expressions

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SYMMETRY-BASEL, vol.10, no.7, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 10 Issue: 7
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/sym10070285
  • Journal Name: SYMMETRY-BASEL
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Karadeniz Technical University Affiliated: Yes


In this paper, we propose a methodology for the step-by-step solution of problems, which can be incorporated into a computer algebra system. Our main aim is to show all the intermediate evaluation steps of mathematical expressions from the start to the end of the solution. The first stage of the methodology covers the development of a formal grammar that describes the syntax and semantics of mathematical expressions. Using a compiler generation tool, the second stage produces a parser from the grammar description. The parser is used to convert a particular mathematical expression into an Abstract Syntax Tree (AST), which is evaluated in the third stage by traversing al its nodes. After every evaluation of some nodes, which corresponds to an intermediate solution step of the related expression, the resulting AST is transformed into the corresponding mathematical expression and then displayed. Many other algebra-related issues such as simplification, factorization, distribution and substitution can be covered by the solution methodology. We currently focuses on the solutions of various problems associated with the subject of derivative, equations, single variable polynomials, and operations on functions. However, it can easily be extended to cover the other subjects of general mathematics.