Algebra is one of the broad parts of mathematics, together with number theory, geometry and analysis. In its most general form, algebra is the study of mathematical symbols and the rules for manipulating these symbols; it is a unifying thread of almost all of mathematics. In mathematics, an algebraic expression is an expression built up from integer constants, variables, and the algebraic operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and exponentiation by an exponent that is a rational number). Algebraic expressions include at least one variable and at least one operation (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division). For example, 2(x + 8y) is an algebraic expression. Algebra is thinking logically about numbers rather than computing with numbers. Paradoxically, or so it may seem; however, those better students may find it harder to learn algebra, because to do algebra, for all but the most basic examples, you have to stop thinking arithmetically and learn to think algebraically.