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The length of the entire boundary is called the perimeter or circumference. Question: Rectangles may be drawn in various sizes, shapes, and positions. Do we label the two dimensions length and width ; or do we use width and height ; or even length and height? Is there a best way?

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Answer: There is more than one correct way! Any pair of these words can be used, as long as your words are used sensibly. Length: If you use the word length , it should certainly be for the longest sides of the rectangle.

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Think of how you would describe the distance along a road: it is the long distance, the length of the road. The words along , long , and leng th are all related. The distance across the road tells how wide the road is from one side to the other. That is the width of the road.

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The words wid e and wid th are related, too. When a rectangle is drawn "slanted" on the page, like this , it is usually clearest to label the long side "length" and the other side "width," as if you were labeling a road. Height: If the rectangle is drawn with horizontal and vertical sides, people often use the word height to describe how high how tall the rectangle is.

  • Scales of Measurement - GeeksforGeeks.
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  • It is then perfectly correct to describe how wide the rectangle is from side to side by using the word width. As you can see, when height and width are used together, either one can be greater. When the word height is used with base, it has a different meaning. We call the measure of athree-dimensional object its volume. Because edges are one-dimensional, and faces are two-dimensional, their measures are length and area, respectively.

    As for naming the dimensions of a three-dimensional figure, the only rule is be sensible and clear. When the figure is "level," height if you use the word refers consistently to how tall the figure is, even if that dimension is greatest; length if you use the word refers to the longer of the other two dimensions. But you may also refer to the other dimensions as width and depth and these are pretty much interchangeable, depending on what "seems" wide or deep about the figure.


    When the figure is not "level" people cannot know what is meant by width, depth, or height without being told or without labels , although length is generally still assumed to mean the direction in which the figure is "longest. Helmenstine holds a Ph. She has taught science courses at the high school, college, and graduate levels. The length of a piece of string can be measured by comparing the string against a meter stick.

    The volume of a drop of water may be measured using a graduated cylinder. The mass of a sample may be measured using a scale or balance. The temperature of a fire may be measured using a thermocouple.


    It is the most commonly used metric system. Metric System : SI is a specific metric system, which is a decimal system of measurement.

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    Examples of two common forms of the metric system are the MKS system meter, kilogram, second as base units and CGS system centimeter, gram, and second as base units. There are many units in SI and other forms of the metric system that are built upon combinations of base units. These are called derived units. English System : The British or Imperial system of measurements was common before SI units were adopted internationally.

    Although Britain has largely adopted the SI system, the United States and some Caribbean countries still use the English system for non-scientific purposes. This system is based on the foot-pound-second units, for units of length, mass, and time. Continue Reading. ThoughtCo uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience.