is a short-cut often used by pharmacy techs and pharmacy students.
You'll want to be able to recognize when and how to use it if studying
for the national exam. Outside of pharmacy, it's mostly an obscure
method, used as an alternative to standard algebra when calculating the
volumes for a mixture made from different strengths of a similar
How to use alligation math
Most pharmacy tech students initially refer to alligation asTic-Tac-toe math, because a simple four line grid is used to organize the factors, which looks just like the popular children's strategy game of the same name.
Sample Alligation test question :
An order has arrived for250mL of 2% solution. You stock solutions of: 1 Gal. of 3% solution and 1 Gal. of 1% solution. You must mix together the two solutions to compound the custom ordered volume.How much of the 3% will you use?
Based on the question:
→ You need 250mL a 2% solution.
→ You have 1% and 3% solutions.
How to do it - Step #1
Grab a pencil and paper to follow along.
First, Draw a tic-tac-toe grid
Higher % strength top left → Desired % Strength in middle → Lower % strength bottom left →
Calculate the difference between the bottom left number and the middle number going up diagonally.
(Not adding or subtracting them, just finding the difference.)
Do the same thing from the top left, down.
Again figuring the difference between the numbers.