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Fractional Exponents vs Radicals 

Mathematical Composition

Stephen J. Lurie

Use of radicals may sometimes be avoided by substituting a fractional exponent: (a2−b2)1/2instead of a2−b2. As with unstacking fractions, if clarity is sacrificed by making the equation fit within the text, it is preferable to set it off. For example, E = 1.96 {[P (1 − P)]/m}1/2 fits within the text, but the centered E=1.96P(1−P)m might be more easily understood.

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