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The change in the value of a quantity divided by the elapsed time. For a function, this is the change in the y-value divided by the change in the x-value for two distinct points on the graph. Note: This is the same thing as the slope of the secant line that passes through the two points.

The rate of change at a particular moment. Same as the value of the derivative at a particular point. For a function, the instantaneous rate of change at a point is the same as the slope of the tangent line. That is, it's the slope of a curve. Note: Over short intervals of time, the average rate of change is approximately equal to the instantaneous rate of change.

Best Answer In mathematics, a constant rate of change is called a slope. For linear functions, the slope would describe the curve of the function. The world "constant" in this context means the slope and therefore angle of the curve will not change.

Some problems in calculus require finding the rate of change or two or more variables that are related to a common variable, namely time. To solve these types of problems, the appropriate rate of change is determined by implicit differentiation with respect to time. Note that a given rate of change is positive if the dependent variable increases with respect to time and negative if the dependent variable decreases with respect to time. The sign of the rate of change of the solution variable with respect to time will also indicate whether the variable is increasing or decreasing with respect to time. Related Topics: Differential Equations Precalculus

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http://www.cliffsnotes.com/study_guide/Related-Rates-of-Change.topicArticleId39909,articleId-39897.html Some problems in calculus require finding the rate of change or two or more variables that are related to a common variable, namely time. To solve these types of problems, the appropriate rate of change is determined by implicit differentiation with respect to time. Note that a given rate of change is positive if the dependent variable increases with respect to time and negative if the dependent variable decreases with respect to time. The sign of the rate of change of the solution variable with respect to time will also indicate whether the variable is increasing or decreasing with respect to time. Example 1: Air is being pumped into a spherical balloon such that its radius increases at a rate of .75 in/min. Find the rate of change of its volume when the radius is 5 inches. The volume ( V) of a sphere with radius r is

The rate of change of the radius dr/dt = .75 in/min because the radius is increasing with respect to time. At r = 5 inches, you find that

hence, the volume is increasing at a rate of 75 cu in/min when the radius has a length of 5 inches.

Example 2: A car is traveling north toward an intersection at a rate of 60 mph while a truck is traveling east away from the intersection at a rate of 50 mph. Find the rate of change of the distance between the car and truck when the car is 3 miles south of the intersection and the truck is 4 miles east of the intersection.

Let x = distance traveled by the truck y = distance traveled by the car z = distance between the car and truck

Figure 1A diagram of the situation for Example 2. . The rate of change of the truck is dx/dt = 50 mph because it is traveling away from the intersection, while the rate of change of the car is dy/dt = 60 mph because it is traveling toward the intersection. Differentiating with respect to time, you find that

hence, the distance between the car and the truck is increasing at a rate of 4 mph at the time in question.

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