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Algebraic Expressions using

properties of Real Numbers

Example:
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Algebraic Expression The result of combining numbers and


variables with the ordinary operations of arithmetic

Example

An expression such as 2x 5y has no definite value unless we


assign values to x and y.

Example

If x=3 and y=4 then,


2x 5y
=
2(3) 5(4)
=
If x=-2 and y=-3 then,
2x-5y
=
2(-2) 5(-3) =

6 20
-4- (-15) =

-14
11

The properties of the real numbers are used also with algebraic
expressions.
Term a single number or the product of a number and one or
more variables raised to powers.

Example

Coefficient The number preceding the variables in a term.

Example

Like Terms Two terms containing the same variables with the
same powers

Example

Combining Like Terms We can combine any two like terms


involved in a sum by using the distributive property.

Example
2x + 5x = (2+5)x

= 7x

Distributive Property
Add 2 and 5

The distributive property allows us to combine only like terms

Products and Quotients We can use the associative property of


multiplication to simplify the product of two terms.

Example
4(7x) = (4(7))x
multiplication
= (28)x
= 28x

Associative property of
Multiplying 7 and 4

Multiplication does not distribute over multiplication

Example
2(3 (4)) = 6 (8)
Do not divide a number into just one term of a sum.

Removing Parentheses Multiplying a number by -1 merely


changes the sign of the number.

Example
(-1)(6) = -6 and

(-1)(-15) = 15.

-1 times a number is the same as the opposite of the number.

Example
(-1)x = -x

or

-1(a+2) = -(a+2).

When a minus sign appears in front of a sum or difference, we can


think of it as multiplication by -1 and using the distributive
property.

The commutative and associative properties of addition allow us


to rearrange the terms so that we may combine like terms.
However, it is not necessary actually to write down the
rearrangement. We can identify like terms and combine them
without rearranging
To Simplify an expression to write an equivalent expression that
looks simpler, but simplify is not a precisely defined term.

Law of Exponents

Positive Integral Exponents


If a is a nonzero real number and n is a positive integer, then
Definition 29:

n factors of a

In the exponential expression


exponent is n.

, the base is a, and the

Positive Integral Exponents provide a convenient way to write


repeated multiplication or very large numbers.

where as

Negative Integral Exponents


If a is a nonzero real number and n is a positive integer, then
Definition 30:

If n is positive, -n is negative

Example
=
=

=
=
=
=

Rules for Negative Exponents


The following rules hold if a and b are nonzero real numbers
and n is a positive integer:
Definition 31:

Changing the Sign of an Exponent A negative exponent in the


numerator or denominator can be changed to positive by
relocating the exponential expression

and

Product Rule for Exponents


If m and n are integers and
, then
Definition 32:

Example
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2)
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Zero Exponent
If a is a nonzero real number, then
Definition 33:

= 1.

Definition 34: Quotient Rule for Exponents

If m and n are integers and

, then

Do not divide the bases when using the quotient rule. We cannot apply the
quotient rule to

even though 6 is divisible by 2

Example
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Definition 35: Power of a Power Rule

If m and n are integers and

Example
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2)
3)

, then

Definition 36: Power of a Product Rule

If a and b are nonzero real numbers and n is any integer,


then

Example
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2)
3)

Definition 37: Power of a Quotient Rule

If a and b are nonzero real numbers and n is any integer,


then

Example
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Additions and Subtraction of


Polynomials

Polynomial
A single term or a finite sum of terms in which the powers of
the variables are positive integers
Definition 38:

The abovementioned terms could be used as terms of a


polynomial
The number preceding the variable in each term is the
coefficient of that term.
The coefficients are 3, -15, and 7 for the first three terms.
In algebra, a number is often referred to as a constant, and so
the term -2 is called a constant term.
The expression below is a polynomial in one variable with four
terms.

For simplicity we usually write polynomials in one variable with


the exponents in decreasing order from left to right. Thus we
would write:

Rather than:

Monomial A polynomial that has one term


Binomial A polynomial that has two terms
Trinomial A polynomial that has three terms
Definition 39: Degree of a Polynomial in one variable
The highest power of the variable in the polynomial.

Definition 40: Addition and Subtraction of Polynomials


To add two polynomials, add the like terms.
To subtract two polynomials, subtract the like terms.

Example:
Find the sums.
1)

2)

Find the differences.


1)

2)

Multiplication and Division of


Polynomials

Definition 41: Multiplication of Polynomials


To multiply polynomials, multiply each term of the first polynomial by each
term of the second polynomial and then combine like terms

Example:
Find the products
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2)
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Definition 42: Division of Polynomials by Monomials


To divide a polynomial by a monomial, we divide each term of the
polynomial by the monomial.

Example:
Evaluate
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Special Products

Instead of writing out all of the steps in using the distributive


property, we can get the result by finding the products of the
first, outer, inner, and last terms. This method is called the FOIL
method.

F
F = First terms
O = Outer terms
I = Inner terms
L = Last terms
O
I

Like terms

Example:
Evaluate
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Definition 43: Rule for the Square of a Sum

Example
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Definition 44: Rule for the Square of a Difference

Example
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Definition 45: Rule for the Square of a Difference

Example
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Definition 46: Rule for the Cube of a Sum

Example
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Definition 47: Rule for the Cube of a Difference

Example
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Factoring

Definition 48: Factoring


The process of expressing a polynomial as a product of polynomials is called
factoring
In general, factoring is the reverse of multiplication, so we can
use our knowledge of multiplication to help develop factoring
techniques.
For example, we previously used the distributive property to find
the product of a monomial and a polynomial, as the next
examples illustrate.

For factoring purposes, the distributive property [now in the form


ab + ac = a (b+c)] can be used to reverse the process.

Polynomials can be factored in a variety of ways:

We are, however, primarily interested in


factorization forms; we refer to it as the
form.

the first of these


completely factored

Definition 49: Completely Factored Form


A polynomial with integral coefficients is in completely factored form if:
1)It is expressed as a product of polynomials with integral coefficients, and
2)No polynomial, other than a monomial, within the factored form can be
further factored into polynomials with integral coefficients.

Violates rule number 2


Violates rule number 2
Violates rule number 1 and 2

This application of the distributive property is often referred to as


factoring out the highest common monomial factor.

Examples
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Sometimes there may be a common binomial factor rather than a


com-mon monomial factor. For example:

Each of the two terms in the expression:

Has a binomial factor of (y+2)


Thus we can factor y+2 from each term and obtain the following:

Examples:
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2)

It may seem that a given polynomial exhibits no apparent


common monomial or binomial factor.

Such is the case with

However, by using the commutative property to rearrange the


terms, we can factor it as follows:

This factoring process is referred to as factoring by grouping.

Lets consider another example of this type:

Recall:

Definition 45: Rule for the Square of a Difference

This same pattern, viewed as a factoring pattern,

Definition 50: Difference of Two Squares

Example
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2)

It is possible that both the technique of factoring out a common


monomial factor and the pattern of the difference of two squares
can be applied to the same problem. In general, it is best to look
first for a common monomial factor.

Examples
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Expressing a trinomial as the product of two binomials is one of


the most common factoring techniques used in algebra. As with
the previous cases, to develop a factoring technique we look at
some multiplication ideas.
Consider the product:

Notice that the coefficient of the middle term is the sum of a and
b and that the last term is the product of a and b. These two
relationships can be used to factor trinomials

Example:
Factor the following
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Trinomials of the Form ax^2 + bx + c


Now lets consider factoring trinomials where the coefficient of
the squared term is not one. First, lets illustrate an informal
trial-and-error technique that works well for certain types of
trinomials.
Example
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Definition 51: Sum and Difference of Two Cubes

Example
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