The division is the process of distributing a number into equal parts. If the number is large the process gets longer and hence called long division. Normally, in the case of long division, the dividend and divisor consist of two or more digits each. The process involves the mathematical exercise of division and subtraction using the paper and pencil technique. This is done by breaking down the division process into small, easy, and repetitive divisions carried out in a series of steps. Knowledge of multiplication tables makes this process handy and easy. 

What Is Long Division?

First of all, we should be clear about three terms associated with long division. First, the number which has to be divided is called ‘dividend’. Second, the number with which the dividend is to be divided is called ‘divisor’. Third, the number which comes out of the division is called ‘quotient’. Sometimes the dividend is not divided completely and the leftover number is called ‘remainder’. For example, if we are asked to divide 7 with 2, 7 is the dividend, and 2 is the divisor. When we proceed for division, we find that 7 is divided a maximum of 3 times with 2 (i.e. 2×3=6). So, 3 is the quotient. Here we also find that after division, there remains 1 at the end. This 1 is the remainder in this case. In the process of division, we have to do some subtraction also which we have already learned.

Steps To Do Long Division

Now the question comes how to perform division in a methodical way so that even larger numbers can be divided with ease.

First, we write the dividend and draw a half small bracket to its left. The divisor is written just outside this bracket. We draw a small horizontal line over the dividend on which we write the quotient.

The division process is started by dividing one or more digits, as the case may be, of the left side of the dividend with the divisor and writing the answer on the line meant for quotient. We write down the other number below the digits of the dividend and subtract it. The next digit of the dividend is now written just right to the remainder if any and the new number is now divided with the divisor and the process is repeated till the last digit of the dividend is used for division. In the last, if any number is left undivided, it remains as remainder.

How to remember the successive steps of long division, i.e. divide, multiply, subtract and bring down becomes a problem for us. In many schools, teachers advise the students to remember it by mom (multiply), dad (divide), sister (subtract), and brother (bring down).

We can very easily test the correctness of our result of the calculation. Simply multiply the divisor with the quotient and add the remainder. If the result is the same number as that of the dividend, the answer is correct.

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