## Algebra

Showing posts with label trinomial. Show all posts
Showing posts with label trinomial. Show all posts

If a quadratic equation factors then certainly you should solve it by factoring. The problem is that not all quadratic equations factor. When this is the case we could use the quadratic formula to find the solutions. (We will limit our introduction to equations where b^2 - 4ac >= 0 .)

Most textbooks provide a nice proof of the quadratic formula. The proof involves solving the general quadratic by completing the square. This study guide will focus on using the formula to solve problems.

Step 1: Identify the coefficients a, b, and c.
Step 2: Write down the formula (you should memorize it).
Step 3: Substitute in the appropriate values and then evaluate.

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### Completing the Square

Solving by factoring and extracting the square roots are techniques that only work for very special quadratic equations. In this section, we will develop a method that will solve any quadratic equation. This technique will be used to develop the quadratic formula.

is to be a perfect square then the constant term must equal 16. In this case, we can see that
To know 16 was the number needed to complete the square we divided our middle term B = 8 by 2 to get 4 then squared that to obtain 16.

Complete the square then factor.

The leading coefficient must be 1 if this method is to work. If it is not equal to 1 we could always factor the coefficient out first as in the next examples.

Determine the constant that completes the square.

Now that you know how to complete the square for a quadratic expression you are ready to solve any quadratic equation. Notice that the next example does not factor, so we will solve it by completing the square.

Solve by completing the square:

Step 1: Add or subtract the constant term to the other side.
Step 2: Add (b/2)^2 to both sides. Here B = −10 so (−10/2)^2 = (−5)^2 = 25

Step 3: Factor and then apply the square root property.
Step 4: Solve as usual.

Tip: Be sure to add the “magic number,”
to both sides so that the equality is retained.

Solve by extracting roots.
So far we have seen examples where the leading coefficients are 1. But if this technique is to be useful for solving quadratic equations of the form
we must address the case where a is a number other than 1.

Solve by completing the square.
Extra Step: Factor out the leading coefficient.
Here B = −6 so (B/2)^2 = (−6/2)^2 = (−3)^2 = 9. Caution! Adding 9 inside the parentheses is equivalent to adding 18 here.
Solve.