# How do you find absolute value of a number?

##### 1 Answer
Oct 23, 2014

The absolute value of a number is simply the distance that number lies away from 0 on the number line. Absolute value eliminates the "direction" traveled to get there. It's like saying that you walked 3 meters frontward versus 3 meters backward. You walked 3 meters in different directions from where you started!
Some examples: $| - 3 | = 3$ and $| 3 | = 3$
$| - 9 | = 9$
$| 5 | = 5$
$| 3 - 11 | = | - 8 | = 8$

With a number line in front of you, you can point to any location and tell someone how far it is from 0 by just ignoring whether that point is to the left or right of 0. Think of that as "absolute value"!