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 Description  
 Like Terms:  Terms in an algebraic expression that have the same variable raised to the same power. Only the coefficients of like terms are different.

Examples of Like Terms

3xy and 5xy are like terms since both terms contain the same variables with the same exponents (i.e., xy's). Only the coefficients (3 and 5) are different.

1.3@#$ and 9$#@ are like terms since they contain the same variables (@, #, and $) with the same exponents. Note that the order does not matter.

3 and 3/2 are like terms since there is no variable. (In fact, they are just numbers or constants.)

Nonexamples of Like Terms

3x + y and 4xy are not like terms since 3x + y is actually two terms and x + y is not the same as xy.
and 17x are not like terms since the variable x does not have the same exponent in each term.
and are not like terms since the terms do not contain the same variable even though the exponents are the same.