2011 AMC 12A Problems/Problem 7


A majority of the $30$ students in Ms. Demeanor's class bought pencils at the school bookstore. Each of these students bought the same number of pencils, and this number was greater than $1$. The cost of a pencil in cents was greater than the number of pencils each student bought, and the total cost of all the pencils was $17.71$. What was the cost of a pencil in cents?

$\textbf{(A)}\ 7 \qquad \textbf{(B)}\ 11 \qquad \textbf{(C)}\ 17 \qquad \textbf{(D)}\ 23 \qquad \textbf{(E)}\ 77$


The total cost of the pencils can be found by $(\text{students}\cdot\text{pencils purchased by each}\cdot\text{price of each pencil})$.

Since $1771$ is the product of three sets of values, we can begin with prime factorization, since it gives some insight into the values: $7, 11, 23$. Since neither $(C)$ nor $(E)$ are any of these factors, they can be eliminated immediately, leaving $(A)$, $(B)$, and $(D)$.

Beginning with $(A) 7$, we see that the number of pencils purchased by each student must be either $11$ or $23$. However, the problem states that the price of each pencil must exceed the number of pencils purchased, so we can eliminate this.

Continuing with $(B) 11$, we can conclude that the only case that fulfils the restrictions are that there are $23$ students who each purchased $7$ such pencils, so the answer is $\boxed{B}$. We can apply the same logic to $(E)$ as we applied to $(A)$ if one wants to make doubly sure.

Video Solution

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6tlqpAcmbz4 ~Shreyas S

See also

2011 AMC 12A (ProblemsAnswer KeyResources)
Preceded by
Problem 6
Followed by
Problem 8
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All AMC 12 Problems and Solutions

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