Ivy League Students Can’t Figure This Puzzle Out - Can You?

If a bat and a ball cost $1.10, and the bat costs $1 more than the ball costs, how much does the ball cost? Think you know the answer to this question? If you do, you beat half of all Ivy League students asked.

More than half the students at Harvard puzzled over this math puzzle, and got it wrong. It may deal with small amounts, making it seem easy, but it's not as simple as it looks.

If you guessed that the ball costs $0.10, you would be among those who are wrong. Surprised? So are most people.

There's no trick to the puzzle; it's actually a straight-forward calculation that most non-math majors screw up. It's the word 'more' that throws everyone off.

If the bat costs $1 more than the ball, that would mean it costs $1 plus the price of the ball. If the ball cost $0.10, then the bat would cost $1.10 on its own. That would have made the total $1.20, not $1.10.

The ball actually costs $0.05; that means the bat costs $0.05 plus $1 more, for a grand total of $1.10.

For you math people out there, there is an equation for it: x + (x+1) = $1.10.

Did you figure it out? Whether you did or you didn't, you now know the answer. Go and stump your friends.

Source: AWM
Photo: AWM

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