Scale Factors

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Scale Factors

Maps include a scale which tells you the relationship between the distances on the page and the distances in real life.

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Distances on maps

  • To work out distances from a map, measure the scale given to find out the relationship (e.g. 1cm = 100m).
    • Then measure the distance on the map and use the relationship to convert this to the distance in real life.
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Scale factors as ratios

  • Map scales can be written as a ratio such as 1 : 5000.
  • This means that each unit on the map represents 5000 units in real life.
    • 1cm on the map = 5000cm in real life.

Jump to other topics


1.1Place Value

1.2Factors & Multiples


1.4Fractions, Decimals & Percentages

1.5Growth & Decay

1.6Measurements & Units



3Ratio, Proportion & Rates of Change

4Geometry & Measures



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