# How do you convert 0.12011 into scientific form?

$0.12011 = 1.2011 \times {10}^{-} 1$
Choose the power of $10$ to make the mantissa a number in the range $\left[1 , 10\right)$ (or $\left(- 10 , - 1\right]$ if it's negative).
Count the number of times you need to multiply or divide the original number by $10$ to find the exponent of $10$. Multiplying or dividing by $10$ boils down to shifting the number one digit to the left or right.
In our case we needed to multiply by $10$ once to bring the mantissa into range, hence the $- 1$ exponent.