Algebra 2: Synthetic Division and Factoring Polynomials

Hey there math friends! In this post we will go over how and when to use synthetic division to factor polynomials! So far, in algebra we have gotten used to factoring polynomials with variables raised to the second power, but this post explores how to factor polynomials with variables raised to the third degree and beyond!

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to comment or check out the video below. Also, don’t forget to master your skills with the practice questions at the end of this post. Happy calculating! 🙂

What is Synthetic Division?

Synthetic Division is a shortcut that allows us to easily divide polynomials as opposed to using the long division method.

When can we use Synthetic Division?

We can only use synthetic division when we divide a polynomial by a binomial in the form of (x-c), where c is a constant number.

Check out the Example below to see synthetic division in action:

Synthetic Division can also be used when Factoring Polynomials!

Let’s take a look at the following example and use synthetic division to factor the given polynomial:

Check!

Try the practice problems on your own below!

Still got questions? No problem! Don’t hesitate to comment with any questions or check out the video above. Happy calculating! 🙂

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Algebra 2: Imaginary and Complex Numbers

Happy Wednesday and back to school season math friends! This post introduces imaginary and complex numbers when raised to any power exponent and when multiplied together as a binomial. When it comes to all types of learners, we got you between the video, blog post, and practice problems below. Happy calculating! 🙂

What are Imaginary Numbers?

Imaginary numbers happen when there is a negative under a radical and looks something like this:

Why does this work?

In math, we cannot have a negative under a radical because the number under the square root represents a number times itself, which will always give us a positive number.

Example:

But wait, there’s more:

When raised to a power, imaginary numbers can have the following different values:

Knowing these rules, we can evaluate imaginary numbers, that are raised to any value exponent! Take a look below:

-> We use long division, and divide our exponent value 54, by 4.

-> Now take the value of the remainder, which is 2, and replace our original exponent. Then evaluate the new value of the exponent based on our rules.

What are Complex Numbers?

Complex numbers combine imaginary numbers and real numbers within one expression in a+bi form. For example, (3+2i) is a complex number. Let’s evaluate a binomial multiplying two complex numbers together and see what happens:

-> There are several ways to multiply these complex numbers together. To make it easy, I’m going to show the Box method below:

Try mastering imaginary and complex numbers on your own with the questions below!

Practice:

Solutions:

Still got questions? No problem! Don’t hesitate to comment with any questions or check out the video above. Happy calculating! 🙂

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Algebra 2: Expanding Cubed Binomials

Greetings math friends! This post will go over how to expand and simplify cubed binomials 2 different ways. We’re so used to seeing squared binomials such as, Screen Shot 2020-08-19 at 11.29.14 AM.png, and expanding them without a second thought.  But what happens when our reliable squared binomials are now raised to the third power, such as,Screen Shot 2020-08-19 at 11.29.48 AM?  Luckily for us, there is a Rule we can use:

Screen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.12.33 PM

But where did this rule come from?  And how can we so blindly trust it? Which is why we are going to prove the above rule here and now using 2 different methods:Screen Shot 2020-08-19 at 11.31.13 AM

Why bother? Proving this rule will allow us to expand and simplify any cubic binomial given to us in the future! And since we are proving it 2 different ways, you can choose the method that best works for you.

Method #1: The Box MethodScreen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.14.37 PMScreen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.14.55 PM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.15.06 PMScreen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.15.39 PM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.15.50 PM

Screen Shot 2020-08-19 at 2.24.54 PMScreen Shot 2020-08-19 at 2.53.43 PM

Screen Shot 2020-08-19 at 2.29.22 PM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.17.19 PM.png

Screen Shot 2020-08-19 at 2.27.56 PMScreen Shot 2020-08-19 at 2.54.36 PM.png

Screen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.21.05 PM.png

Method #2: The Distribution MethodScreen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.17.54 PM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.19.49 PMScreen Shot 2020-08-19 at 2.42.11 PM

Screen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.21.05 PM.png

Now that we’ve gone over 2 different methods of cubic binomial expansion, try the following practice questions on your own using your favorite method!

Practice Questions: Expand and simplify the following.

Screen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.21.56 PM

Solutions:

Screen Shot 2020-08-18 at 10.22.19 PM.png

Still, got questions?  No problem! Check out the video above or comment below! Happy calculating! 🙂

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**Bonus: Test your skills with this Regents question on Binomial Cubic Expansion!

 

Algebra: How to use Recursive Formulas?

Welcome to Mathsux! This post is going to show you everything you need to know about Recursive Formulas by looking at three different examples. Check out the video below for more of an explanation and test your skills with the practice questions at the bottom of this page.  Happy calculating! 🙂

What is a Recursive Formula?

A Recursive Formula is a type of formula that forms a sequence based on the previous term value.  What does that mean?  Check out the example below for a clearer picture:

Example #1:

Screen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.12.21 AM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.12.33 AMScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 9.18.18 AM

Screen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.13.07 AMScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.13.36 AM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 9.21.01 AM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.14.34 AM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.14.49 AMExample #2:

Screen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.15.19 AM.png

Screen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.15.38 AMScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 9.22.10 AMScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.52.36 AMScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.52.52 AM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 9.23.54 AM.png

***Note this was written in a different notation but is solved in the exact same way!

Screen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.53.24 AM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.53.35 AM

Example #3:Screen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.54.05 AM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.54.19 AMScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 9.24.42 AMScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.54.49 AMScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 9.25.41 AM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.56.22 AMScreen Shot 2020-08-11 at 8.56.36 AM.pngPractice Questions:

Screen Shot 2020-08-11 at 10.04.21 AM

Solutions:

Screen Shot 2020-08-11 at 9.02.18 AM.png

Still got questions? No problem! Check out the video above for more or try the NYS Regents question below, and please don’t hesitate to comment with any questions. Happy calculating! 🙂

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***Bonus! Want to test yourself with a similar NYS Regents question on Recursive Formulas?  Click here!

Algebra 2: How to Solve Log Equations

Welcome to Mathsux! Today, we’re going to go over how to solve logarithmic equations, yay! But before we get into finding x, though, we need to go over what logarithms are and why we use them in the first place…..just in case you were curious!

Also, if you have any questions about anything here, don’t hesitate to comment below or shoot me an email.  Happy calculating! 🙂

Logarithms are the inverses of exponential functions.  This means that when graphed, they are symmetrical along the line y=x.  Check it out below!

Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.29.23 PM.png

When on the same set of axis, notice how the functions are symmetrical over the line y=x:

Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.30.16 PM

We use logarithms to find the unknown values of exponents, such as the x value in the equation, Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.30.55 PM.png.  This is a simple example, where we know the value of x is equal to 2,(Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.32.30 PM.png). But what if it were to get more complicated?  That’s where logs come in!

Logarithms follow a swooping pattern that allows us to write it in exponential form, let’s take a look at some Examples below:Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.34.16 PM.pngBut wait there’s more! Logs have a certain set of Rules that makes working with them easier! Check it out below:

Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.35.10 PMWe can use these rules to help us algebraically solve logarithmic equations, let’s look at an example that applies the Product Rule.

Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.36.08 PM.png

Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.36.50 PM

Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.46.07 PM.pngScreen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.38.32 PM

Try the following practice questions on your own!

Practice Questions:

Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.39.16 PM.png

Solutions:

Screen Shot 2020-06-24 at 9.40.37 PM

Still got questions?  No problem! Check out the video that goes over the same example outlined above.  And for more info. on logarithms check out this post that goes over a NYS Regent’s question here.  Happy calculating! 🙂

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****Check out this Bonus Video on How to Change Log Bases****

Algebra: 4 Ways to Factor Quadratic Equations

*If you haven’t done so, check out the video that goes over this exact problem, and don’t forget to subscribe!

Screen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.03.55 PMScreen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.04.24 PM____________________________________________________________________Screen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.20.04 PM____________________________________________________________________

Screen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.07.02 PM____________________________________________________________________
Screen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.07.42 PM
Choose the factoring method that works best for you and try the practice problems on your own below!

Practice Questions:

Screen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.09.58 PMSolutions:

Screen Shot 2020-06-02 at 3.10.30 PM

Want a review of all the different factoring methods out there?  Check out the ones left out here (DOTS and GCF) and happy calculating! 🙂

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Algebra 2: Solving Radical Equations

Screen Shot 2020-05-11 at 9.01.41 PM

Today we’re back with Algebra 2, this time solving for radical equations!  Did you say “Radical Equations?” As in wild and crazy equations? No, not exactly, radicals in math are used to take the square root, cubed root, or whatever root of a number.

Radicals are actually pretty cool because we can write them a couple of different ways and they all mean the same thing! Check it out below:Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.23.20 AM.pngStill not sure of their coolness? Let’s see what they look like with actual numbers:
Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.24.21 AM.pngExample: Solve the following algebraic equation below for the missing variable (aka, solve for x).Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.25.03 AM.pngExplanation:

How do I answer this question?   

The question wants us to solve for x using our knowledge of radicals and algebra. You can also check out how to solve this question on Youtube here!

How do we do this? 

Step 1: We start solving this radical equation like any other algebraic problem: by getting x alone. We can do this easily by subtracting 7 and then dividing out 5.Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.26.21 AM.pngStep 2: Now, to get rid of that pesky radical, we need to square the entire radical.  Remember, whatever we do to one side of the equation, we must also do to the other side of the equation, therefore, we also square 14 on the other side of the equal sign. 

*This gets rid of our radical and allows us to solve for x algebraically as normal!Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.29.11 AM.pngScreen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.29.34 AM.pngWhat happens when there is a cubed root though!?!? When dividing polynomials with different value roots, raise the entire radical to that same power of root to cancel it out:Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.30.21 AM.pngRemember, we know radicals can also be written as fractions: Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.31.01 AM.pngTherefore we also know that if we raise the entire radical expression to the same power of the root, the two exponents will cancel each other out:Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.31.47 AM.pngWant more practice? Try solving these next few examples on your own. Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.32.39 AM.pngWhen you’re ready, check out the below:Screen Shot 2020-05-12 at 11.33.12 AM.png

Did I miss anything?  Don’t let any questions go unchecked and let me know in the comments! Happy calculating! 🙂 

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Algebra 2: Dividing Polynomials

Screen Shot 2020-05-03 at 11.43.01 AMNow that everyone is home, there is no better time to go over dividing polynomials! Whether school is out or not, dividing polynomials will always come in handy… I think.

Either way at some point, you may need to know how to answer these types of questions. The cool thing about dividing polynomials is that it’s the same long division you did way back in grade school (except now with a lot of x). Ok, let’s get to it and check out the question below:

Also, if you haven’t done so, check out the video related that corresponds to this problem on Youtube! 🙂

Screen Shot 2020-05-04 at 10.21.17 PMExplanation:

How do I answer this question?

The question wants us to divide polynomials by using long division.

How do we do this?     

Step 1: First we set up a good ole’ division problem with the divisor, dividend, and quotient to solve.Screen Shot 2020-05-04 at 10.43.48 PM.pngStep 2: Now we use long division like we used to back in the day! If you have any confusion about this please check out the video in this post.Screen Shot 2020-05-04 at 10.22.52 PMScreen Shot 2020-05-04 at 10.23.27 PM.pngWhat happens when there is a remainder though!?!? When dividing polynomials with a remainder in the quotient, the answer is found and checked in a very similar way! Check it out below:
Screen Shot 2020-05-04 at 10.23.44 PM

Screen Shot 2020-05-04 at 10.24.06 PM

Notice we represented the remainder by adding Screen Shot 2020-05-04 at 10.35.06 PM to our quotient! We just put the remainder over the divisor to represent this extra bit of solution.

Want more practice? Try solving these next few examples on your own. Screen Shot 2020-05-04 at 10.45.10 PM.pngWhen you’re ready, check out the solutions below:Screen Shot 2020-05-04 at 10.45.37 PMI hope everyone is finding something fun to do with all this extra time home! That can include everything from baking a cake to studying more math of course, happy calculating! 🙂 

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Algebra 2: Binomial Cubic Expansion

Screen Shot 2019-05-24 at 8.47.46 AM.pngScreen Shot 2019-05-24 at 8.48.17 AM.pngscreen-shot-2019-05-24-at-8.49.45-am.pngScreen Shot 2019-05-24 at 8.50.15 AM.png

Screen Shot 2019-05-24 at 8.51.01 AM

Extra Tip! Notice that we used something called FOIL to combine (a+b)(a+b).  But what does that even mean? FOIL is an acronym for multiplying the two terms together.  It’s a way to remember to distribute each term to one another.  Take a look below:

Screen Shot 2019-05-24 at 9.02.50 AM.pngScreen Shot 2019-05-24 at 9.03.23 AM.png

Add and combine all like terms together and we get Screen Shot 2019-05-24 at 9.04.45 AM.png!

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Still got questions?  Let me know in the comments and as always happy calculating! Also, check out the video below for more! 🙂

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