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A GEOMETRIC EXAMPLE:

Let's look at a polygon inscribed in a circle... If we increase the number of sides of the
polygon, what can you say about the polygon with respect to the circle?

As the number of sides of the polygon increase, the polygon is getting closer and
closer to becoming the circle!

If we refer to the polygon as an n-gon, where n is the number of sides, we can make
some equivalent mathematical statements. (Each statement will get a bit more
technical.)

 As n gets larger, the n-gon gets closer to being the circle.


 As n approaches infinity, the n-gon approaches the circle.
 The limit of the n-gon, as n goes to infinity, is the circle!

The n-gon never really gets to be the circle, but it will get darn close! So close, in fact,
that, for all practical purposes, it may as well be the circle. That's what limits are all
about!

Archimedes used this idea (WAY before Calculus was even invented) to find the area
of a circle before they had a value for PI! (They knew PI was the circumference
divided by the diameter... But, hey, they didn't have calculators back then.)
SOME NUMERICAL EXAMPLES:

EXAMPLE 1:
Let's look at the sequence whose nth term is given by n/(n+1). Recall, that we let n=1
to get the first term of the sequence, we let n=2 to get the second term of the
sequence and so on.

What will this sequence look like?

1/2, 2/3, 3/4, 4/5, 5/6,... 10/11,... 99/100,... 99999/100000,...

What's happening to the terms of this sequence? Can you think of a number that
these terms are getting closer and closer to? Yep! The terms are getting closer to 1!
But, will they ever get to 1? Nope! So, we can say that these terms are approaching 1.
Sounds like a limit! The limit is 1.

As n gets bigger and bigger, n/(n+1) gets closer and closer to 1...

EXAMPLE 2:

Now, let's look at the sequence whose nth term is given by 1/n. What will this sequence
look like?

1/1, 1/2, 1/3, 1/4, 1/5,... 1/10,... 1/1000,... 1/1000000000,...

As n gets bigger, what are these terms approaching? That's right! They are
approaching 0. How can we write this in Calculus language?

What if we stick an x in for the n? Maybe it will look familiar... Do you remember what
the graph of f(x)=1/x looks like? Keep reading to see our second example shown in
graphical terms!
SOME GRAPHICAL EXAMPLES:
On the previous page, we saw what happened to the sequence whose nth term is
given by 1/n as n approaches infinity... The terms 1/n approached 0.

Now, let's look at the graph of f(x)=1/x and see what happens!

The x-axis is a horizontal asymptote... Let's look at the blue arrow first. As x gets
really, really big, the graph gets closer and closer to the x-axis which has a height of 0.
So, as x approaches infinity, f(x) is approaching 0. This is called a limit at infinity.

Now let's look at the green arrow... What is happening to the graph as x gets really,
really small? Yep, the graph is again getting closer and closer to the x-axis (which is
0.) It's just coming in from below this time.

But what happens as x approaches 0?


Since different things happen, we need to look at two separate cases: what happens
as x approaches 0 from the left and at what happens as x approaches 0 from the right:

and

Since the limit from the left does not equal the limit from the right...

Let's look at a more complicated example...

Given this graph of f(x)...

First of all, let's look at what's happening around the dashed blue line. Recall that this
is called a vertical asymptote.

So...

Another way to think about the limit is the find the height of the graph at (or really
close to) the given x. Think about a little mountain climbing ant (call him Pierre) who is
crawling on the graph. What is Pierre's altitude when he's climbing towards an x?
That's the limit!

Let's try some more...


Let's look at what's happening at x = -7... The limit from the right is the same as the
limit from the left... But there's a hole at x = -7!

That's ok! We don't care what happens right at the point, just in the neighborhood
around that point. So...

Can you find the limit of f(x) as x approaches -3?

That's right!

How about the limit of f(x) as x approaches 0?

Right again!
Let's look at one more type of limit. To do this we'll show you the screen of a TI-92
graphing calculator!

This is the graph of

(If you have a TI-92, the viewing window here is -1.5, 2.1, 1, -3.3, 4.7, 1, 2.)
It sure wiggles around a lot! But, we see that

Well, that's all I have to say about limits right now. I hope it helped!

Precalculus Algebra Needed for Calculus


Graphing

Slopes of Lines

Equations of Lines

Horizontal and Vertical Lines

Tangent Lines

Graphs to Know and Love

Shifting, Reflecting, Etc.

Piecewise Functions

Absolute Values

Sideways Parabolas

Polynomials

Increasing and Decreasing

Maximums and Minimums

More on Tangent Lines

Tail Behavior

Rational Functions - Introduction

Rational Functions - Intercepts

Rational Functions - Vertical Asymptotes

Rational Functions - Horizontal Asymptotes (and Slants)


Rational Functions - The Whole Thing

Rational Functions - Increasing and Decreasing Revisited

Rational Functions - More on Limits

Exponentials and Logarithms

Tools

Logarithms

The Difference Quotient

Composition of Functions

Freaky Factoring

Precalculus Geometry Needed for Calculus

Basic Formulas to Know

Precalculus Trigonometry

The Unit Circle

The Pythagorean Identities

Other Identities to Know

Solving Trig Equations

BasBasic Graphsic Graphs

Lesson 1 - Graphing - Slopes of Lines


I'm going to start with the basics here. I know that you probably know this
easy stuff... But, I'm going to build up to something, so bear with me and
read it.

Let's look at the line passing through the points

and

The simplest way to look


at the slope is

(rise over run)

To get from the point


(-2 , -1) to the point (4 , 3), you
rise up 4...
and run over 6.

The slope is

Remember that, for ...

You can "rise" up or down, but you ALWAYS "run" to the right!
Let's look at this in a way that will get us that formula for crunching slopes
from two points:

Look at the as

That is what gets us that


familiar formula:

In math and science, we often use a Greek capital "D"... delta ( )... to
represent a "change".

A Calculus notation you'll see a LOT ditches the Greek letter part and uses
"d's"...

It's a simple thing from Algebra, but the slopes of lines are going to be
REALLY important in Calculus.
One last thing on slopes of lines...

Remember that lines with positive slopes are ones that go uphill (as you go
from left to right):

slope = 5 slope = 1 slope =

Lines with negative slopes go downhill:

slope = -3 slope = -1 slope =

Just for a little review, find the slopes of these lines:


<i

Lesson 2 - Graphing - Equations of Lines


You're going to be surprised at how important finding the equations of lines
is in Calculus. In some chapters, you'll be doing it as the last step to almost
every problem! So, let's make sure that you really have it down.

The standard form for the equation of a line is

But, the form that is used the most in Calculus is the slope-intercept form:

Slopes are going to be a big deal and this form shows the slope!

Let's do a quick review of the pieces and how the graphing works just to
clean some cobwebs out of your brain.
Remember the pieces:

Let's graph a couple:

The y-intercept is 4:

The slope is . From the y-intercept...


TRY IT:

Graph

The next thing is to remember how to find the equation of a line given a point
and a slope.

If we have a point, and a slope, m, here's our formula:

You'll be using this a lot, so let's run through a couple of examples...

Find the equation of the line that passes through the point

with a slope of -2:

Here's another one:

Find the equation of the line that passes through the point
with a slope of :

YOUR TURN:
Find the equations of the lines:

passing through

passing through
Horizontal and Vertical Lines

These puppies are going to pop up on you a lot in Calculus, so let's make
sure you remember which is which!

If you remember which of these is the vertical guy and which is the
horizontal guy, then you're good to go... But, if you still have to think twice
about it, I've got a way to keep them straight.

When I want to graph , I say,

"y is always -2...


and x can be anything!"

Now, I just draw what I said:


When I want to graph , I say,

"x is always 3...


and y can be anything!"

YOUR TURN:
Multiply

Graph

Graph
Lesson 4 - Graphing - Tangent Lines
Here's a Calculus preview of WHY slopes of lines and equations of lines will
be so important.

Tangent lines!

So, what's a tangent line?

First of all, don't think of the tangent from trig... Yeah, it's definitely related,
but we don't have to think that hard here.

Check out this picture:

A tangent line is a line that touches a graph in one local point so that, when
you zoom in on it, the graph and the tangent line will eventually look the
same.
Why will we need this in Calculus?

Because we want to study the exact behavior of graphs at every little point
and section... Lines are much easier to work with than the entire graph.
Tangent lines will give us easy snapshots of what's going on!

I'll show you more about this later.

Before we go any further, I should probably warn you about my philosophy


on graphing:

PLOTTING POINTS IS FOR SISSIES!

That's right. I said it. The official definition of a "sissy" is a weak or feeble
person... and, if you try to graph something like a parabola by making one of
those pathetic x-y charts

and making guesses... then you are a big sissy! Real geeks graph with their
brains because they know what they're doing. It takes a heck of a lot less
time and it's more accurate. I once saw a Calculus teacher draw a complete
blank and try to graph a parabola by plotting points... It got ugly fast. Don't
let this happen to you!

There is a lot of graphing in the first semester of Calculus... A LOT!


You'll be finding
areas between
two curves...

You'll even be
rotating things
around and
finding volumes!

Actually, it's pretty dang cool. (cough - geek!) It's not so cool if you stink at
graphing.

This section has all the main graphs that pop up over and over in Calculus
texts...

Know them and be a happy student...

Love them and be a happy geek!


First, here's a special line guy that you've probably seen before... I call him

Line Guy:

And you probably already love Standard Parabola Guy:

Here are some that may be new to you:


The Disco Graph:

You know...
John Travolta?
That pose?

Square Root Guy:

It's just half of


a parabola lying
on its side.
Absolute Value Guy (or V guy):

The Flying Butterfly:


The Volcano:

These last two will be important if you go on to take Calculus -- they make
great examples.

So, there's the list.


Lesson 6 - Graphing - Shifting, Reflecting, Etc
I hope you got really good at shifting parabolas around! It works the same
way for the Graphs to Know & Love.

Let's review:

Do these for some review :

Graph

Graph

Graph
OK, let's go!

Graph

Graph
TRY IT:

Graph

Graph

YOUR TURN:

Graph
Graph

TRY IT:

Graph
This dashed line is called an asymptote.
Graphs approach, but they don't touch!

YOUR TURN:

Graph
Lesson 7 - Graphing - Piecewise Defined Functions

Ah, Calculus teachers love using piecewise functions! They stay home
Saturday nights dreaming up new ones... just for you!

If you've loathed them before, no fear. I've got a simple way to keep all the
pieces straight.

Let's just dive in and do one:

Each piece must live ONLY in its own neighborhood.

Let's put up a fence, so we don't make any mistakes:

Now, we just need to figure out who the fence owner is...
Let's graph part :

Now, let's graph part :


Done!

TRY ONE:

Let's do one with three pieces...

Graph

Let's put up the fencing:


Remember that they can't cross over into the other neighborhoods!
OK, so why are we being so careful about not crossing the fences into the
other neighborhoods?

Because these guys are functions! Remember that functions have to pass
the vertical line test.

TRY ONE:
Lesson 8 - Graphing - Absolute Values
You probably haven't seen these before, but they really do make ultra cool
Calculus problems. I've seen them in most texts. They're really pretty easy
if you look at them the right way.

First, let's look at what absolute values do:

Absolute values leave positive numbers and zero alone... and make
negative numbers positive!

So, with graphs... let's think about the y guys:

OK, so we know what the graph of this guy looks like...


So, what would the graph of this guy look like?

These are negative heights The absolute value makes


(y guys)... them positive!
YOUR TURN:

Graph

Hint: Graph first.

Now, let's look at an old friend:

What does an absolute value do to him?


It takes these negative heights...

and makes them positive!

Hey! It's V Guy! That's where he came from!


(Go tell your cat.)
Lesson 9 - Graphing - Sideways Parabolas

Yeah... sorry to tell you... But, you


really do have to know how to graph
these... And I don't want you trying
to plot points like you don't know
what you're doing!

First, let's take a new view of our


coordinate system.
This will get us through these!

Now, let me introduce you to Sideways Parabola Guy:

He's the same shape as Standard Parabola Guy. He opens towards


positives -- just like Standard Parabola Guy:
Now, we are going to need to be able to move this new guy around.

Let's look at what's happening a little at a time:

FLIPS:
Let's look at Standard Parabola Guy:
Now, for Sideways Parabola Guy:

Try a couple (the stretching works the same):

Graph

Graph

IN SHIFTS:

Standard Parabola Guy:

(I'm just going to draw quick rough sketches.)


* shifts towards positive x's * shifts towards negative x's

These are locked together...


x is a back-n-forth guy, so the h is the back-n-forth shift!

Sideways Parabola Guy:

These are locked together...


y is an up-n-down guy, so the k is an up-n-down shift!
(Again, I'm just going to do quick sketches --
you should make yours the official way and label 3 points.)
* shifts 1 towards positive y's! * shifts 2 towards negative y's!

YOUR TURN:

Graph

Graph

Finally, we've got the shifts that are hanging off on the end:

Standard Parabola Guy:


* shifts 3 towards negatives! * shifts 1 towards positives!

These go together...
y is an up-n-down guy, so k is an up-n-down shift.

some people actually write the graphing form this way to really lock
them together:
Sideways Parabola Guy:

These go together...
x is a back-n-forth guy, so h is a back-n forth shift!
(Remember, I'm only doing quick rough sketches.)

TRY IT:
Graph

All together now!

Graph

Let's identify each thing that's going on:

YOUR TURN:

Graph
Graph

Lesson 10 - Graphing – Polynomials


I know, you've worked with polynomials before, but we need to make sure
that you really understand how their shapes work. I definitely take an artist's
approach to these critters!

Understanding shapes and graphs will actually help you to know what some
answers in Calculus will be before you crunch them!

I like to call the graphs of polynomials "roller coaster graphs."

Let's review even degree polynomials first. Remember that these

would be polynomials whose leading term is


, ,
etc.

Starting us off is Standard Parabola Guy. Let's really pay close attention to
his basic shape. (I'm just going to draw rough sketches here.)
The tails both shoot
up...

We've got one valley.

This guy touches the x-axis once... It doesn't cross,


it just touches (a kiss).
Remember that this is a multiplicity of 2 ( )

We've got one


mountain.

The tails both


shoot down.

Parabolas can also cross the x-axis TWO times (since their degree is
TWO.) This happens when they have extra terms (other stuff added on!)
Like

Fourth degree polynomials get a lot more exciting... If they have extra stuff
added on.

is pretty boring. If you grab a graphing

calculator* to graph him, you'll see that he looks a lot like Standard
Parabola Guy - but with a wider valley.

Still, the tails


both shoot up.

wider here

The cool stuff happens when we get more terms in there!

Pop this guy into a graphing calculator:


Your graph should look about like this:

THINGS TO NOTICE:

Both tails shoot up.

One mountain

Two valleys

In Precalculus, you were mostly concerned with finding where these cross or
touch the x-axis -- because, really, that's all you COULD easily find without
Calculus.

Now, we'll be more interested in the mountains and valleys, where the graph
is going up and down and what those tails are doing.
So, what would this guy look like?

Both tails shoot down...

I'm not really sure about those wobbles though... Not without the specific
info... And not without a graphing calculator... OR CALCULUS! So, I'll just
do my best and draw a basic shape for now.
Remember that a 4th degree
polynomial can cross the x-axis, at
most, FOUR times. This info really
helps with these rough sketches!

What about ?

It can cross, at most, six times... positive even degree always starts with the
left tail up... Let this info guide the shape as you draw...

Both tails shoot up.

It COULD have two


mountains and three
valleys.

YOUR TURN: Draw a rough sketch of

and make a note of its features.


Let's move on to odd degree polynomials. Our easiest odd degree guy is
the disco graph... We really should give him a more mathematical name.
How about Standard Cubic Guy?

Notice those tails. They go


in opposite directions!

Boring without any wobbles though.

Pop this guy into a graphing calculator:

The tails do the same thing as Standard


Cubic Guy... But, we get to cross three
times (3rd degree!)

So, what would this guy look like?


look like? No wobbles,
What does
that's for sure.

Put it in a graphing calculator...

Just like

looked like ,

this guy looks like ,

but his shoulders are wider.

What would he look like with wobbles?

His left tail starts low like the disco graph. He can cross the x-axis, at most,
five times...
Tails go in opposite
directions...
May have two mountains
and two valleys.

YOUR TURN:
Draw a rough sketch and make a note of its features.
Lesson 11 - Graphing - Increasing and Decreasing
One of the main things you'll be hunting in Calculus is where graphs are
increasing and decreasing... So, we'd better review it!

Check out this graph:

You've got an ant climbing on the graph. Not just any ant... Pierre the
Mountain Climbing Ant!

(He's kind of a pathetic math super hero.) For this, the rule is that Pierre
only crawls from left to right (like we read):

If Pierre is climbing uphill, then the graph is increasing:


So, our graph is increasing on

(We use interval notation with X VALUES!)

Continued on the next page

If Pierre is going downhill, then the graph is decreasing:


So, our graph is decreasing on

Notice that I'm not using the endpoints on these:

Think about it... When Pierre is standing right ON x = -3...

he's not going uphill or downhill. He's just standing there!


What if Pierre is walking on ?

That line is horizontal (slope of 0). He's not going uphill or downhill, so the
graph is not increasing or decreasing there.

TRY IT:
For the following graph, list the intervals where the graph
is increasing and decreasing:
*Remember to answer in interval notation using only x values (no y values
allowed)!
Lesson 12 - Graphing - Relative Minimums and
Maximums (Extrema)
Another huge thing in Calculus is finding relative extrema.

Check out this graph:

The tops of the mountains are relative maximums because they are the
highest points in their little neighborhoods (relative to the points right around
them):
Suppose you're in a roomful of people (like your classroom.) Find the tallest
person there. (It's usually a guy.) He is the relative max of that room.
Specifically, he's the tallest, relative to the people around him. But, what if
you took that guy to an NBA convention? There'd be lots of guys who beat
him.

Look back at the graph...


(Relative extrema (maxs & mins) are sometimes called local extrema.)

Other than just pointing these things out on the graph, we have a very
specific way to write them out.

Officially, for this graph, we'd say:

f has a relative max of 2 at x = -3.


f has a relative max of 1 at x = 2.
The max is, actually, the height... the x guy is where the max occurs.

So, saying that the max is (-3, 2) would be unclear and not really correct.

Now, for the relative minimums... These are the bottoms of the valleys:
Relative mins are the lowest points in their little neighborhoods.

f has a relative min of -3 at x = -1.


f has a relative min of -1 at x = 4.

YOUR TURN:
Find the relative extrema:
So, how many relative mins and maxs does the typical polynomial critter
have?

Don't know? When in doubt, draw pictures!

Let's draw some possible shapes of

Remember, we use how many times he can cross (his degree) to guide us.

a plain
Hmm... It looks like an guy can have, at most, 3 relative extrema.

What about ?

(I'll let you do the drawing.)

It looks like an guy can have, at most, 4 relative extrema.

I smell a theorem brewing! (Either that or it's because I didn't shower this
morning.)

A polynomial of degree n can have,


at most, n - 1 relative extrema.

Lesson 13 - Graphing - More on Tangent Lines


Let's say I've got a graph describing Coolmath's revenue...
(fictional!)
Let's plop some tangent lines in there:

It's pretty clear that the tangent lines with positive slopes are good (yea -
profits are going up)... and tangent lines with negative slopes are bad (boo -
profits are going down.)

So, slopes of tangent lines can tell us where a graph is increasing or


decreasing.

But, we can use tangent lines to tell us even more than that.
Let's check out one of the mountains on the graph:

Look at what's happening to the slopes on the left side... Yeah, they are
positive... which means that the graph is increasing... But, their values are
getting smaller as you climb the mountain from left to right. If I'm smart, I
see that a revenue problem could be coming up! Look at the top...

That's a horizontal tangent line. It could mean that a big change is coming.
Yeah, it could mean that this will happen:
But, unfortunately, that's not what happens here.

Now, look at the tangent lines on the right side...

The slopes not only tell us that revenue is decreasing... But, those values
are getting smaller! This is NOT a good thing when revenue is involved.

OK, let's look at one of those valleys:

Look at the tangent lines on the left...


Things are bad... But, although those slopes are negative, they're getting
bigger.

This could mean that a much needed turnaround in revenue is coming!


Look at the bottom... There's one of those horizontal tangent lines again!

Do things improve? Yep! (Whew.)

Look at the tangent lines on the right...


Not only are those slopes positive, they are getting bigger. This is when you
start celebrating!

In Calculus, you'll be doing a lot of hunting for those horizontal tangent lines
because that's where interesting stuff happens: maximums, minimums,
changing from increasing to decreasing and changing from decreasing to
increasing.

While we're here, I want to point out a couple more things to you.

Look at the mountain again.

Notice that it's shaped like an upside down bowl... In Calculus, you'll call this
"concave down." Let's take another look at those slopes:
Here's the list in order from left to right:

Notice that the slopes of the tangent lines are decreasing.

Now, look at the valley:

Notice that it's shaped like a regular bowl... In Calculus, you'll call this
"concave up."

Look at the slopes:


Here's the list in order from left to right:

Notice that the slopes of the tangent lines are increasing.

One of the other things you'll be hunting for is the point where the graph
changes from concave down to concave up (and visa versa).

It's called "the point of inflection."

This tangent line stuff was probably way more than you wanted to know.
But, believe me, it's nice to get to see it all ahead of time before you have all
those Calculus numbers, x's and formulas flying at you at what will seem like
the speed of light!
YOUR TURN:
On the following graph, draw tangent lines at
x = 1, x = 2, x = 3 , x = 4, x = 5 and x = 6.

Where is the graph concave down?


Where is the graph concave up?
Lesson 14 - Graphing - Tail Behavior
Now, were going to play a little Calculus game on these guys. Don't worry --
it's really easy. Just some picture stuff.

We're going to look at what's going on with those tails...

Really, we want to know two things:

What happens to the height of the graph as x gets really, really big?

What happens to the height of the graph as x gets really, really small?

The phrasing on this might get you... Just keep reading and I'll put it a few
different ways.

Look at this graph:


Remember that this guy goes on forever. That's what those arrows are for!

As x gets bigger and bigger, the height of the graph is going down, down,
down!

To get a little math notation going...


As

This little arrow can be read as "approaches" or "goes to."

And remember that f(x) is just a fancy name for y...

As

Let's look at the other tail:

As x gets smaller and smaller, the height of the graph is going up, up, up.

As x approaches , the height of the graph approaches


.

As

To sum up:
Let's do another one:
Both tails are shooting up on this guy. So, whether Pierre runs way out to
the right or to the left, it's mountain climbing time.

Yes, Pierre will be sporting lederhosen.

What about this one?

TRY IT:
Draw a rough sketch of the graphs and label the end-tail
behavior:

FYI, what we've been doing here is called "finding limits"... And, yes, this is
Calculus, baby! Not bad, eh?
Lesson 15 - Graphing - Intro to Rational Functions
Remember graphing these?

Oh, the horror! Not these again? Yep. They're baaaack! Yeah, you
guessed it. These are important in Calculus, too.

But, not to worry! I have a great way to teach them that I'll bet you've never
seen before (unless your Precalc teacher is a Coolmath fan!)

To graph these, we'll need

and

That's it!

No, I'm not going to make you go through an a - k list of steps.


Here are the 2 things:

intercepts
asymptotes

Here are the 2 sentences:

These guys are functions.


Graphs hug asymptotes.
(Don't worry. The next sections will tell you what these things mean.)

I'm guessing that you haven't seen my method before, so I'm going to go
through all the gory details. Since plotting points is for sissies, it will be our
personal challenge to graph these things ONLY using the 2 things and the 2
sentences. Oh, and one more little thing: our brain!

NOTE: Until we learn Calculus, we'll really just be able to get pretty good
rough sketches of these critters. Calculus will fill in all the details!
Lesson 16 - Graphing - Rational Functions:
Finding the Intercepts
These are easy!

Y-INTERCEPTS: Where the graph crosses the y-axis

OK, think about it... When you are on the y-axis, what is your
x value?

The x value is 0.
So, find the y-intercept...
Set x = 0!

That's the same as finding f(0).

Check it out:

So, the y-intercept for this guy is the point


TRY IT:
Find the y-intercept of

X-INTERCEPTS: Where the graph crosses the x-axis

Hey, this is the same as finding the zeros!

Set and solve

But, here's the cool thing: For these rational guys, you just need to set the
numerator = 0 and solve!

Why? That's a great question -- I'm glad you asked...

Well, when a fraction is 0, it's the same as saying the numerator is 0:

So, set the numerator = 0 and solve.

Check it out:
numerator = 0

So, the x-intercepts are the points

and

TRY IT:
Find the x-intercepts of

BIG NOTE:

These processes find the ONLY intercepts!


There will NOT be any others!!

(This info will be very important.)


Lesson 17 - Graphing - Rational Functions:
Finding Vertical Asymptotes
Remember asymptotes?

We've got that sentence:

Graphs hug asymptotes.


What does it mean?

Let's check out one of our old friends...

See how the graph is


getting closer and
closer to the axes?...
But, it will never
touch them?
The x and y axes are
asymptotes!
Asymptotes are lines (usually invisible) in space that a graph gets closer and
closer to but never touches...

Graphs hug asymptotes.

OK, so for vertical asymptotes...

Set the denominator = 0 and solve.


This is like finding the bad spots in the domain. It's where the function
cannot exist.

Check it out:

So, the vertical asymptotes are the lines

They look like


We draw them with dashes since they are really invisible.

TRY IT:
Find (and draw) the vertical asymptotes of
Lesson 18 - Graphing - Rational Functions: Finding
Horizontal and Slant Asymptotes
I'll start by showing you the traditional method, but then I'll explain what's
really going on and show you how you can do it in your head. It'll be easy!

Given some polynomial guy

If
, then the x-axis is the horizontal asymptote.

If , then the horizontal asymptote is the line

If , then there is no horizontal asymptote. (There is a slant


diagonal or oblique asymptote.)

Yeah, yeah, you COULD just memorize these things... but it's way better to
KNOW what's going on. Then you can just do it.

What we're really doing is some quick long division to divide the denominator
into the numerator. The cool thing is that we only need to do the first part --
no remainder crud! And we can do it in our heads!

Check it out:
Find the horizontal asymptote for

If we write out the long division...

We got this 2 by looking at

So, the horizontal asymptote is the line

We could have just taken a quick look at

and have been done with it!


So, let's do this one the quick way:

Find the horizontal asymptote of

Look at

The horizontal asymptote is the line

Now, try another one in your head:

Find the horizontal asymptote of


Look at

The horizontal asymptote is the line

TRY IT:
Find the horizontal asymptote of

What about this one?

Find the horizontal asymptote of

Look at

So, the horizontal asymptote is the line


(which is the x-axis)

This one falls under part on our list.

YOUR TURN:
Find the horizontal asymptote of

OK, so what about this one?

, we find that
If we look at WILL divide in...
the

But, there's going to be some x stuff left over to deal with. This is when
you need to start in with some long division... and we get to ignore the
remainder!
You can stop here since the rest will be remainder stuff.

TRY IT:

Find the slant asymptote of


Lesson 19 - Graphing - Rational Functions: The
Whole Thing

OK... what were the 2 things?

intercepts
asymptotes

What were the 2 sentences?

These guys are functions.


Graphs hug asymptotes.

Let's do some graphing, baby!

2 things
Graph and
2 sentences!

The y-intercept: Find f(0)


The x-intercept: Set numerator = 0 and solve

Since we only deal with real numbers when


graphing, this has no solution! This is going to be very
* Do you see why? useful info!

Vertical asymptotes: Set denominator = 0 and solve


Horizontal asymptote:

Look
at

Now we're ready to graph... Remember that plotting points is for sissies, so
use your brain!

First, let's graph our intercepts and asymptotes on the graph:

* Remember that the graph CANNOT cross the y-axis anywhere else and it
CANNOT cross the x-axis at all!

Now, we use our brains and our sentences...

There are the three neighborhoods that this graph lives in:
Let's look at the left neighborhood:
* Remember your 2 sentences!

Since he's a function (and must pass the vertical line test), he can't do both.

What did we say about crossing the x-axis for this guy? (Look back if you
need to.)

Yep -- he's not allowed to cross the x-axis! But, look at that bottom guy:
But, he's not allowed to -- so, he's got to live upstairs!

We can use the same reasoning for the right neighborhood:

What about the middle neighborhood:


And remember, he's not allowed to cross the x-axis! So, he CAN'T do any of
these things:

What's left?
DONE!

YOUR TURN:

(You already have all the


Graph pieces!)

Hey, you can check it on the graphing calculator! Enter it like this:

Let's do another one:


2 things
Graph and
2 sentences!

The y-intercept: Find f(0)

The x-intercept: numerator = 0, solve.

Vertical asymptotes: denominator = 0, solve


Horizontal asymptote:

Look
at

* When this is the case, we're going to be forced to "quickie plot" a few
points to nail the graph. No, this isn't being a sissy -- we'll have no choice.
But, Calculus will fix this problem by telling us where the graphs are
increasing and decreasing!

OK, let's start graphing!

Let's get our intercepts and asymptotes down:


Since we've got that pesky y = 0 horizontal asymptote, we can't use our
"nowhere else" info on the x-intercepts to figure out the "upstairs" or
"downstairs" stuff. Until we have Calculus, we're going to have to humble
ourselves and plot some points -- kind of! We're going to avoid taking that
pathetic trip to Sissyville by cheating a little bit... I call it "quickie plotting."

Four strategically located points will do it and all we really need to know is if
he's above or below the x-axis at each point.

We'll be plugging x's into the factored form:

* We only care about positives


and negatives -- See if you can
do it!
Now we've got it! Remember that he can only cross the x-axis at
x = 0... So, once he's below, he'll be stuck there... and, once he's above,
he'll have to stay above:
YOUR TURN:
Graph

(You've already done all the pieces!)

* Remember that, when you are working these things out -- write out all of
your work in a neat and organized way! This is one of the main reasons you
have to take math classes -- they teach you to organize your thoughts AND
TO THINK!

One last problem:

2 things
Graph and
2 sentences!

The y-intercepts: Find f(0)


The x-intercepts: numerator = 0, solve

Vertical asymptotes: denominator = 0, solve

Horizontal asymptote:

Look at

Hey -- it's a slant!


Slant asymptote:

OK, Skippy -- are you ready to graph this bad boy?

Intercepts and asymptotes:


First , let's think about the left and right neighborhoods:

Here's what we've got -- see if you can figure it out!

Graph hug asymptotes.


These guys are functions.
He can ONLY cross the x-axis at x = 0.
Can he do this?
So, it must be like this:

What about the middle neighborhood?

We'll need to quickie plot two points... Try it before going on.
NOTE: A common mistake that students make is to think that a graph
cannot cross a slant or horizontal asymptote. This is not the case! A graph
CAN cross slant and horizontal asymptotes (sometimes more than once).
It's those vertical asymptote critters that a graph cannot cross. This is
because these are the bad spots in the domain.

YOUR TURN:
Graph
Lesson 20 - Graphing - Rational Functions:
Increasing and Decreasing Revisited
Let's look back at some of the critters we graphed in the last section and find
the intervals where they are increasing and decreasing.

Increasing? Pierre the Mountain Climbing Ant is walking uphill... Remember


that Pierre always walks from left to right for these.

f is increasing on .

* Remember to answer with interval notation using x values.

Why did we leave the -5 out? Because the graph doesn't even exist there!
Decreasing? Pierre is walking downhill...

f is decreasing on .

How about this one?


It's one wild ride for Pierre! Downhill sledding all the way! But, if we said
that f is decreasing everywhere, that wouldn't be quite right... Because the
graph doesn't exist at x = -4 and at x = 2.
It's decreasing everywhere on its own domain, which is

YOUR TURN:

Given

Find the intervals where f is decreasing.

Find the intervals where f is increasing.


Given Graph it!

Find the intervals where f is decreasing.

Find the intervals where f is increasing.


Lesson 21 - Graphing - Rational Functions:
Limits
Remember end-tail behavior? What's going on with those tails?

This was called "finding limits."

One of the things math geeks get all jazzed about in Calculus is seeing what
happens when and .

We can do this with these rational function critters, too. The key here is that
horizontal (or slant) asymptote.

Check it out:
Remember... GRAPHS HUG ASYMPTOTES!

As x gets bigger and bigger (goes to the right), our graph gets closer and
closer to that asymptote (which is y = 2.) It will never actually hit the
asymptote ( f(x) will never = 2), it will just get closer and closer. This is why
we use the word "approaches." It's the same story on the left when x is
getting smaller and smaller.

Since we understand all this horizontal asymptote junk, we can even do


these guys without the graph!

Check it out:
Since the horizontal asymptote is y = 3,

Draw the graph to double-check.

TRY IT:
For each of the following, without doing the graph, find
the end-tail behavior as and as .
Double check your answers by graphing.
There's another limit thing we geeks get excited about with these graphs --
and it has to do with what happens to the graph around those asymptotes.
We just love following the arrows on graphs. It's how we spend our Friday
nights.

Check it out:

Let's look at this guy again:

Here's a question for you:

Pierre is running towards x = 2... What's happening to his altitude as


he's approaching? Does he need scuba gear? Mountain climbing
equipment?
Hmm... You should now be asking me a question:

From which way is he approaching? The right or the left?

If he's climbing in from the


right, he's climbing up, up,
up.

If he's coming in from the left,


he's climbing down, down,
down.

We'll need a notation to distinguish between the right and left:

Approaching x = 2 from the left:

Approaching x = 2 from the right:

So...

What about as Pierre runs towards x = -2 ?


If he's coming
in from the
right, he's
climbing up.

If he's climbing
in from the left,
he's climbing
down.

Again, it matters whether he's coming in from the right or the left:

Here's another one:


YOUR TURN:
Label all limits on the graphs:

OK, let's see how you do with some graphs to know and love. For each,
draw a rough sketch and fill in the info:
f is decreasing on ______________________
f is increasing on ______________________

f is decreasing on ______________________
f is increasing on ______________________
Lesson 22 - Graphing - Exponentials and
Logarithms
The important thing to remember for these graphs is the basic shape.

Remember that exponentials have

When (like or ),

the basic shape of the graph looks like

The bigger x
gets, the faster
the graph climbs

The x-axis is a horizontal asymptote.

When (like ), the basic shape

goes downhill:
So, what if there is a negative exponent? Does the graph go uphill?
Downhill? It all depends on the base!

is really Do the Algebra!

is really
Check out this sequence:

Can you figure out what the next term will be? Maybe you saw the pattern
right away... and maybe you didn't

Each term is found by adding the two previous terms:

So, what's the next term?


What's the 50th term?

Hmm... Not as easy as it was with those squared guys...

Unfortunately, with this guy, you'd have to find all the terms leading up to the
50th term -- since he's based on the two before them and so on. When this
happens, it's called recursion.

By the way, this last sequence is very famous! It's called the Fibonacci
Numbers. (Named after Fibonacci, of course.)

How about this sequence?

Can you guess the next term?

What about the 20th term?

This one isn't so funny. If we do some thinking, we'd probably be able to


figure it out. Luckily, we'll be able to get a formula for this kind of sequence
later.

OK, so what about this sequence?

Can you find the pattern?

Can you find the next term?

This one's not so simple... There IS a pattern, but it's a bit buried.

Let's list the differences between the terms and see if that helps.
See what's going on?

We're adding 2 each time down here, so just continue with this pattern and
work your way back up:

We won't be working with these buried guys in later sections, but, they're
kind of interesting, so I wanted to show them to you.

TRY IT:
Find the next term:
There's one last intro thing I need to tell you about.

There are finite sequences that just stop after a certain number of times.

Like this guy:

And there are infinite sequences that keep on going forever and ever.

Like:
Lesson 23 - Tools - Logarithm Rules
This is just a formula game. In Calculus, these rules can make an
impossible problem really easy!

Here's an example that you can double-check


on your calculator to see if this really works:

Check this on your calculator:

Finally, here's our old friend:


Check this on your calculator:

Here's how you can use these in Calculus to make your life a lot easier:

Check this guy out:

Having logs of little things will be much easier, so let's use our rules:

Trust me on this -- the Calculus on this would take about 10 seconds!


Let's do another one:

It's really easy to just do these guys in your head.

Here's how it works:

Guys that start out on the top...

end up with "+" signs in front of them:


Guys that start out on the bottom...

end up with "-" signs in front of them:

Then you just have to deal with the exponents. Easy!

Let's do this guy in one shot:

TRY IT:
Rewrite this as a bunch of little logs:
They only get a little messier...

The only other thing they'll throw at you is roots... When this happens, just
switch over to exponential notation:

YOUR TURN:
Rewrite these as a bunch of little logs:
* remember

You're going to use rule #3 in Calculus a lot -- again to make impossible


problems doable. I'm not going to lie... They still won't be easy, but, at least
you'll be able to do them!

In Calculus, having a variable in the base AND in the exponent is bad news.

Remember that this guy lets you bring those variables down in front:
TRY IT:
Lesson 24 - Tools - The
Difference Quotient
The Difference Quotient

You probably saw this semi-obnoxious thing in Algebra... And I know you
saw it in Precalculus. Go back and look at the Slopes of Lines lesson
again... This thing is just the slope of a line through the points ( x, f(x) )
and ( x + h, f(x + h) ). It's going to be used in the most important
Calculus theorems, so you really need to get comfortable with it. I know
right where students get messed up on these, so let's back up a bit and start
with some basics. We'll build up from there.

You're probably fine with the easy stuff:

Given

* Remember that parentheses ( ) are REALLY important on these!


TRY IT:

Same function:

find

find

find

Ha ha... I made you write "booger." I'm so mature.

Now do
(This is important! Use those parentheses!)

Writing out is what will save you on these!

Now, let's do :

Just stick x + h in here!


That wasn't too bad, was it? Now, can we do the whole difference quotient?

We have the pieces:


NOTE: If you do these difference quotient guys properly, the original h in
the denominator will reduce out!

Here's another one:

Given

Do the part first!


YOUR TURN:

Given
Find

Here's one that's messy to clean up:

Given

So,
YOUR TURN:

Given
Find

ADVICE: Memorize this thing now!


Lesson 25 - Tools - Composition of
Functions
Remember this notation?

This is a lesson on composition of functions... But, not like you think!

In Calculus, you're going to need to look at this in a different way...

Look at this guy:

When I look at this, I see two things:

AN OUTSIDE: AN INSIDE:

call it call it

So,

The cool thing is that, for this, we don't need all that messy notation. We just
need to be able to find the levels!
Levels often (but, not always) announce themselves with parentheses or the
word "of" as you read it.

Like

Read it! "Cosine OF 5x."

outside

inside

How many levels of composition do you see here?

Careful here! Remember to write this as what it really means:

I see three levels:

outside

middle

inside

Here's one more... I do it below... Try it before looking!


* read it out loud!

outside

next in

next in

inside

TRY IT:
How many levels of composition do you see? List them.
Lesson 26 - Tools - Freaky Factoring
I'm going to assume that you know how to factor the basic stuff like
trinomials and the difference of two squares...

What you really need for Calculus 1 is what I'm going to show you here.
This is a very specific type of factoring that will pop up when you have to
clean up your answers on a certain Calculus technique. With that in mind,
the following examples are designed with some unique patterns.

Let's start with some really easy stuff to get you into the pattern of what's
going on.

Factor

This one has the same pattern:

Factor

TRY IT:

Factor

Here's another one...


Factor

This one has the same pattern:

Factor

YOUR TURN:

Factor

Notice what's happening in these examples.

Look at the last few:

The on our blobs (5 and 4) have a difference of 1...

So, we factor out the lowest power of the blob...


And then we simply slash the exponent off of the other blob!

Factor the numbers too!

Giving us

You'll catch on. It's easy!

Factor

Blob powers differ by 1...


Take the smallest blob out...
(and deal with the 70 and 30)
TRY IT:

Factor

OK, now we're going to get weirder... and more like these will really be.

What if there are two types of blobs?

Factor

That was easy... So, we should be able to tackle this creep (who has the
same pattern):

Factor
Even though this looks like the messiest factoring you've ever done, it's
really the easiest because the pattern will always work the same way in
Calculus.

Factor this guy:

Just deal with these separately.

This thing has the same shape:

Factor
YOUR TURN:
Factor:

The only other creepy thing that's going to happen with these is that some
will have rational exponents... fractions! Not to worry though because they'll
work the same way. You just have to be able to pick which fraction is the
smallest.

Let's start off easy:

Factor
The y's are easy...
Which fraction power

is smaller? That one

comes out!

That's it! Multiply it back out if you don't believe me!

Here's another one:

Factor

TRY IT:

Factor

Factor
That last guy was to get you ready for this bad boy!

Factor

TRY IT:

Factor

Factor
Lesson 27 - Geometry - Basic Formulas to
Know
In Calculus, you'll still be doing all those typical word problems with ships
and planes... The big difference is that the things in Calculus MOVE!
Calculus gives you tools to find "rates of change." You'll be able to figure out
how fast a boat is pulling away from a dock or how fast water is draining out
of a tub. Lots of these problems will have geometry set ups.

Here's a basic list of geometry formulas that pop up in most Calculus texts:

The Pythagorean Theorem:

Rectangle Info:

area

perimeter

Box info:
volume

surface area

Circle info:

area

circumference

Sphere info:

volume

surface area

Cylinder info:
Triangle info:

area

Pyramid info:

volume
Cone info:

volume

Trapezoid info (isosceles):

area

Troughs (water drains out of these a lot!):

* Volumes work just like prisms... Take the area of the end and
multiply by the length!
And remember similar triangles!

You can always use similar triangles to set up proportions:

or

Or, more commonly, you can mix and match like these:

or
Lesson 28 - Trigonometry - The Unit Circle and
Basic Trig Identities

What's ?

If you don't know off the top of your head, then you need this section! These
critters are going to pop up over and over again in Calculus.

The unit circle is a fantastic way to remember your trig values. Remember
that it's just a circle with a radius of one... but, it gives us such cool info!

If you haven't already, it's time to memorize this thing!

Here are the main angles:


RADIANS

DEGREES
I'm assuming that you've seen the unit circle before, so I'm not going to go
into the details of where this stuff comes from.

Here are the corresponding points on the circumference:


Now, how to remember all this AND put it together with sines, cosines, etc:

It's really simple.

There are only five things you need to remember:


Sine guys are "up and down" guys

Cosine guys are "back and forth" guys

The short length is

The medium length is


The long length is

Continued on the next page

Know where your angles are...

Know

And it's easy to remember the lengths at the angles:


All you really need are the sines and cosines because you can get all the
others from these using basic identities:

When you need to figure something out, just get in the habit of drawing a
little unit circle. Works every time!

Let's do some!

up and down guy


short
positive

back and forth guy


long
negative

up and down guy


medium
negative
YOUR TURN:

What about those other guys? Easy.


YOUR TURN:
Lesson 29 - Trigonometry - The
Pythagorean Identities
You are going to need to quickly recall the three Pythagorean Identities. The
first one is easy to remember because it's just the Pythagorean Theorem.

on the unit circle.

But, can you remember the other two? If you forget, here's the quick way to
get them from the first one:
(You can also remember that the "co" guys go together!)

Let this one guide you...

So, if you want the guy with a


, divide by .

So, if you want the guy with a


, divide by .

You'll still be doing a lot of simplifying of trig expressions in Calculus, and


these come up a lot!
Lesson 30 - Trigonometry - Other Trig Identities
to Know
Here are the identities I've already mentioned:

Here are the others that come up a lot:

Notice that these go in alphabetical order!


Also, the cosine guys are in the first position on both
and the sine guys are in the second position on both.
Lesson 31 - Trigonometry - Solving Trig
Equations
You'll be needing to solve some trig equations at the very end of some
Calculus problems... So, let's review!

Solve

Remember that this is asking for the where the

sine is That's long and negative!

ALWAYS draw a quick unit circle!

Usually, you'll just need to find the


solutions on ... which
is one lap around the unit circle.

So, for

or

If you want ALL the solutions, remember that you add to get all the
laps around

or

YOUR TURN:
Solve on

Solve on

*hint:

find this!

Here's another one:

Solve

We need to ditch this! Replace it with cosines since we have another


cosine!

or

or

short, positive
YOUR TURN:

Find all solutions:


One more:

Solve

Remember the game on these... We know how to solve


... So, let's do that.

This 1 means that sine and cosine are the same!


So,

Just go around and you


pick up the other one.

But, we needed to solve for x, not . Stick the 3x back in for the :

You can always check this solution on a graphing calculator by graphing

at the same time. They should intersect at and every

interval from there.


TRY IT:

Solve

Sequences & Series Lessons


What's a Sequence?

Sequences with Formulas

Series and Sigma Notation

Some Sigma Notation

Arithmetic Sequences

Gauss's Problem and Arithmetic Series

Geometric Sequences

Geometric Series

Mathematic Induction

The Binomial Theorem

What's a Sequence?
Let's look at some patterns:

Do you see the pattern?

What will the next shape be?

TRY IT:
What's the next shape?

What about this one?

What will the next number be? 18


We added 3 each time.

TRY IT:
What's the next number?

Here's another:
What's the next number? 64
These are all squares.

TRY IT:
What's the next number?

These are all sequences.

Here's a casual definition:

A SEQUENCE is a list of numbers


(or other things) that changes
according to some sort of pattern.

With numbers, we usually assign each spot with a special symbol:

So, for the sequence of squares that we already saw


What would the 10th term in this sequence be?

What would be?

Sometimes it's really easy to find the pattern and find some random nth term
like we just did... and sometimes it isn't.

Check out this sequence:

Can you figure out what the next term will be? Maybe you saw the pattern
right away... and maybe you didn't

Each term is found by adding the two previous terms:

So, what's the next term?


What's the 50th term?

Hmm... Not as easy as it was with those squared guys...

Unfortunately, with this guy, you'd have to find all the terms leading up to the
50th term -- since he's based on the two before them and so on. When this
happens, it's called recursion.

By the way, this last sequence is very famous! It's called the Fibonacci
Numbers. (Named after Fibonacci, of course.)

How about this sequence?

Can you guess the next term?

What about the 20th term?

This one isn't so funny. If we do some thinking, we'd probably be able to


figure it out. Luckily, we'll be able to get a formula for this kind of sequence
later.

OK, so what about this sequence?

Can you find the pattern?

Can you find the next term?

This one's not so simple... There IS a pattern, but it's a bit buried.

Let's list the differences between the terms and see if that helps.
See what's going on?

We're adding 2 each time down here, so just continue with this pattern and
work your way back up:

We won't be working with these buried guys in later sections, but, they're
kind of interesting, so I wanted to show them to you.

TRY IT:
Find the next term:
There's one last intro thing I need to tell you about.

There are finite sequences that just stop after a certain number of times.

Like this guy:

And there are infinite sequences that keep on going forever and ever.

Like:

Sequences with Formulas


Remember when I did that list with the a's to describe a sequence...

And I told you this was the nth term?

That probably didn't mean much to you at the time. Here's what we use this
for:

The nth term is given by a formula.


We can use this formula to build the sequence.
Check it out:

Let's build the sequence whose nth term is given by


See the n's in this guy ?

If we let n = 1, we'll get the first term of the sequence:

If we let n = 2, we'll get the second term:

If we let n = 3, we'll get the third term:

and so on...

So, our sequence is

It's easy!
When you're given a formula for , you stick in n = 1, then
n = 2, then 3, 4, and 5 to get the first five terms.

TRY IT:
Build the sequence (the first five terms) whose nth term is given by

Continued on the next page

The cool thing about the last two formulas is that you can just jump in and
find ANY term of the sequence!

For , let's find the 100th term:

Easy!

Some formulas are a bit trickier. Remember what happened with the
Fibonacci numbers? We COULDN'T just pop out the 100th term, since
each term was based on the two previous terms.

Here's the official formula for the Fibonacci's:

These notations aren't as bad as they look!

If we want the 10th term, then n = 10...


So,

See? Not bad!

Let's build the Fibonacci's using the formula:

We need to be given the first two terms to start or we can't do anything:

let n = 3:

let n = 4:

let n = 5:

let n = 6:

and so on.

Let's try another one like this.

Let's build the sequence whose nth term is given by


and
Here we go!

let n = 2:

let n = 3:

let n = 4:

let n = 5:

So, the sequence is

*When you build a sequence, finding the first five terms will usually do the
job.

YOUR TURN:
Build the sequence (the first five terms) whose nth term is given by

Series and Sigma Notation

OK, so we know what a sequence is -- it's a list of numbers (or other things)
that changes according to some pattern.

So, what's a series? Easy!

A SERIES is the sum of a sequence.


Here's a sequence:

Here's the corresponding series:

We have a special notation for series.

First, let's get the formula for the nth term of the above sequence...
I think it's

Do you agree? Does it work?

Find the first five terms to check.


So, how are we going to let people know that we want to add up all the
terms of this sequence and make it a series?

We'll use this Greek letter:

It's an "S" in the Greek alphabet.


Think of it as an "S" for "sum!"

There are three groups of people who know the symbol:

Greek people

People in sororities and fraternities

Math geeks

So... If you aren't in groups or ... You KNOW what this means. It's
time you face it.

Our series adds five terms:

Here's the official notation and don't worry -- I'll explain each part:
* Notice that we're using a k instead of the n...
This is important and will make something easier later.

So, for this sequence whose nth term is given by , we


have

Let's do another one so you can get more used to the notation.

Let's find the sum:


Crunch it out!

See? Now, that wasn't that bad!

Let's try one more:

Find this sum:

TRY IT:
Find the sum:
Find the sum:

Here are some basic guys that you'll need to know the sigma notation for:

THE EVENS:

This means the series goes on forever and ever.

If you want to generate

what would you need to change?

THE ODDS:
Odd numbers are just evens plus one...

Or you can think of odd numbers as evens minus one...


Wait a minute! What just happened here?!

Here's what happened...


These guys started at different places.

So, be careful and ALWAYS check the first few terms to make sure that
everything works!

Does this guy generate ALL the odds?

ALTERNATING SIGNS:
These will come up a lot!

We know how to generate the evens

But, what if the signs alternate?

Using one of these will fix it:


Which of these you use depends on where you start your index and if the
thing starts with a positive or a negative. I know you don't believe me, so
check it out:

TRY IT:
Write the sigma notation for

Write the sigma notation for

Sequences & Series Lesson 4 - Properties of Sigma


Notation
If you're going on to Calculus, you're going to need these!
Here's the first one:

Here's an example so you can believe it:

Find this sum:

Now, find these sums and add them:

Do you believe it? (You should have gotten the same thing for both.)

This may not seem like a big deal, but you'll need it to prove some important
calculus stuff, so let's get used to it.

Here's the proof:

Just expand it out...


Now, use the commutative and associative properties... Gather up the a's...
Gather up the b's...

Here are the other two properties -- I'll let you do the proofs:
Sequences & Series Lesson 5 - Arithmetic
Sequences
These are arithmetic sequences:

Do you see the pattern for how each of these changes?

We add 1 each time.

We add 3 each time.


We add -5 each time.

So, arithmetic sequences change by adding a number to each term.

We called this number the "difference."

Why?

If you take ...

Same with ...

Sometimes, it's not so easy to find this critter!

Check out this sequence:

Can't tell by looking, can ya?

So, let's do the official difference hunt:


This is probably the difference, but
we'd better check it!

better get us up to !

YOUR TURN:
Find the difference:

OK, now we need to figure out how to get the nth term for these things.

Given this arithmetic sequence

Let's find the 50th term, the 100th term and the nth term.

First, we need the difference... 4!

Whenever you're trying to create a math formula, it's always a good idea to
make a table and look for a pattern.
Let's get more efficient with the notation:
Do you see the pattern?

Check out the term number and the guy that's changing on the right...

What's and ?
So, the formula for the nth term is

Here's the cool thing: We're NOT going to have to keep making these
tables! Since all arithmetic sequences behave the same way (change by
adding a number), we can get a formula that works for ALL of them!

Check out the pieces of our last guy:


Let's check to see if this thing works on another arithmetic sequence:

How about this guy?

This would be the formula:

Let's use it to find :

Now, let's check it the long way:

Yep!

The cool thing is that you can use this formula to find the 2000th term:

Continued on the next page


TRY IT:
Find

Here's our official formula:

Given an arithmetic sequence

that has a difference of d,

the nth term is

YOUR TURN:
Given the arithmetic sequence

Find .
Find the formula for the nth term.

Find .

Find .

Sequences & Series Lesson 6 - Gauss's Problem


and Arithmetic Series
Carl Friedrich Gauss (1777 - 1855) is one of the world's most famous
mathematicians.

This story has been flying around for years... who knows if it's really true or
not!?

Gauss was about 9 years old -- already a super genius (much like Wile E.
Coyote.) His teacher hated math and hated Gauss (because he was so
smart).

As usual, the teacher walked into the class and gave them a horribly tedious
arithmetic problem. They were to work on it and not bother him.

Here was the day's problem:

Add the integers from 1 to 100.


They got out their slate boards and chalk and started hammering away!
The teacher quickly noticed that Gauss was not writing -- HA! He had him
now!

"CARL! Why aren't you working?!"

"Because I already know the answer."

"Oh? You're so smart -- why don't you share your answer with the class?"

"It's 5050."

"#*@#&*!"
It was true. Gauss had figured it out... In his head... At 9 years old... Do
you hate him too?

Want to know how he did it? It's a trick!

Let's write out the problem like this:

There's a pattern here!

Check this out:


There are 50 pairs of 101...

That's

Dang!

TRY IT:

Find the sum of the integers from 1 to 40.

Find the sum of the integers from 1 to 62.


Do you think we can find a formula that will work for adding all the integers
from 1 to n?

Think about it! Look over the last three problems we just did -- see
anything?
Let's write it out the same way:

How many pairs of n + 1 are there? Half of n!

pairs of

TEST IT:
Find the sum

(You know it will be 5050 + 101 = 5151.)

Does the formula work?

How would you write this series in sigma notation?


A similar formula works for when the terms skip some numbers, like

Here's the formula:

To find the sum of the first n terms:

Here's how I remember it:

* This is for arithmetic sequences ONLY!

Let's try it!

Let's find the sum of the first 50 terms of the arithmetic sequence:

We have:
We need:

Remember the formula!

Plug it all in:

It's a cinch if you know the formulas... and absolutely no fun if you don't!
Make flash cards! Gauss's problem always helps me remember. (That kid
was scary!)

YOUR TURN:

Find the sum of the first 93 terms


Find

(You'll need to find and .)

Here's a tricky one:

Find

We can find the first term:

and the last term:

So... we just need n...

How many terms are we adding up?

NO!

Let's look at an easier example to help us figure this out:


There are THREE terms.

terms:

So, it's 7 - 4:

So, for our problem:

Back to the problem:


YOUR TURN:

Find

Sequences & Series Lesson 7 -


Geometric Sequences
If you're going on to Calculus, these are going to be important!

Remember that with arithmetic sequences we added something each time.

With geometric sequences, we'll multiply by something each time.

Here are some geometric sequences:

We multiplied by 2 each time.

We multiplied by each time.

This is called the ratio.

So, how do we find the ratio?


Sometimes, you can just look...

The ratio is 4.

But, you usually don't get this lucky.

Check out this guy:

All of a sudden this isn't so funny! Don't start to sweat yet. It's really pretty
easy...

Just crunch out :

Probably the ratio...

To check, test it on the second term:

Yep, it got us up to !
YOUR TURN:
Find the ratio:

OK, so how can we find that magical nth term for a geometric sequence?
(Remember that this will get you that sigma notation to generate the series
for these.)

Let's do one the long way and figure out how the formula works for these.

Let's find the 50th term and the nth term of this geometric sequence

First we need the ratio:

Now, let's do the table thang!


This is getting messy! Let's streamline the notation so we can nail the
pattern.

See the pattern?

Check out the term number and the guy that's changing on the right:
Let's just leave it like
this -- it's a really huge
number!

So, what's the formula for the nth term?

Now that we know how these geometric guys work, we won't have to do the
table thing anymore!

What are all the pieces?

Here's the general formula:


Given a geometric sequence

with a ratio of r, the nth term is

Let's try it!

What's the 17th term of this sequence?

Find the ratio:

So...

By the way, these ( ) are really important if your ratio is negative! So, be
careful!

TRY IT:

Find the formula for the nth term, then use it to find the
11th term of this sequence

Sequences & Series Lesson 8 - Geometric


Series
OK, this is going to blow your mind! In this section, I'm going to add up an
infinite number of numbers -- all positive -- and get a FINITE answer!

Think about it...

If you add these guys... forever...

The answer would be infinite -- right?

Well, I'm going to get a number. Just wait. We'll get to it in awhile.

First, let's check out the sigma notation for geometric sequences:
Here's an example:

TRY IT:
Find the sigma notation for

* hint: Find r first, then get the nth term formula.

So, what if we want to find this sum?

Luckily, there's a formula!


To find the sum of the first n terms of a geometric
sequence:

Let's use it:

Check to make sure the formula works by adding these up:

TRY IT:

Find the sum of the first 15 terms of


OK, now for the mind-blowing infinite thing!

Now, we want to find this sum:

And... we WILL get a finite number for the answer!

Here's the formula...

For this to work, the ratio has got to be greater than -1


and less than 1...

(The ratio must be between -1 and 1.)

The math way to say this is .

So...

If , then
That's it!

Let's try it:

No! Duuuuuude!

How can this be?!

You mean to tell me that

But, that's an infinite number of numbers! This is madness! My head hurts.

OK, settle down... Let me convince you that this is possible.

Look at this:

Let's add it on a big number line:


Let's add one term at a time...
See what's happening? Can you guess what the sum will be?

Let's crunch the formula:


,

Do you believe it? Repeat after me: Duuuuude.

By the way, when and we CAN find the sum, the series

is called "convergent."

YOUR TURN:
Find the sum

But, we're not quite done yet.

Our formula only works when .

So, what if r is something like ? Then the series does not have

a sum. It shoots off to infinity. When this happens, we call the series
"divergent."
So, if someone asks you to find the sum of an INFINITE geometric
sequence, CHECK THE RATIO!

If , crunch the sum.

If , say something like

"There's no finite sum. This critter's divergent!"

TRY IT:
Find the sums (if possible):

Sequences & Series Lesson 9 - Mathematical


Induction
There are several different methods for proving things in math. One type
you've probably already seen is the "two column" proofs you did in
Geometry.

In the Algebra world, mathematical induction is the first one you usually learn
because it's just a set list of steps you work through. This makes it easier
than the other methods. There's only one semi-obnoxious step (the main
one!) But, I've got a great way to work through it that makes it a LOT easier.
I was going to start out by officially stating "The Principle of Mathematical
Induction"... But, writing it out on my rough draft even gave ME a
headache! So, I'm just going to write out the steps... Go ahead and read
them through... But, don't expect to understand anything yet. I'm going to
explain how the whole thing works after. It really isn't that bad.

The four steps of math induction:

Show is true

Assume is true

Show
* In math, the arrow means "implies" or "leads to."

End the proof


This is the modern way to end a proof.

The third step is the only tricky part... And it's the most important step... You
have to show EVERY little detail! Remember that you are proving
something -- which means that you have to spell out your entire argument. I
call this a "monkey proof." You have to write it out soooo clearly that the
average intelligent monkey can read it through and not get confused.
Teachers are very hip to the fact that omitting details or skipping steps on
these is, probably, clueless fudging on your part.

OK, I promised that I would actually explain this thing to you, didn't I? Take a
minute and go back to read the steps again. I'll wait.

Don't worry. I didn't understand it at first either. Lucky for you, I'm going to
explain it so you WILL get it!

Let's look at some dominoes...

Did you ever stack them so you could knock them all down? It's actually
pretty fun and, if you've never done it, I highly recommend that you do.

Let's line up a row of dominoes...

There are four main parts to math induction...


Can we knock down the first domino?

Yes!

Show is true.

Can we knock down a random domino somewhere


in the middle?
Let's call it the kth domino.

Yes!
(This one is the big deal.)
If we knock down that kth domino, will the next domino get knocked
down too?

If we do all of the above, will all the dominoes fall?

YES!

OK, Let's do one!

Prove
Show is true:

So, is true.

Assume is true:

is true.

Show
So,

Thus, is true.
Whew, that looks like one big mess! When doing a problem like this,
you need to show ALL the work I did except for my
comments. And, yes, you have to show each of the little steps in
part 3... Don't want to confuse the monkey!

Before we do another one, I want you to rewrite this last one out again -- but,
without my comments. Think through each step as you go.

Prove

Here's another one:

Prove

Show is true:
So, is true.

Assume is true:

is true

Show
So,

Thus, is true.

OK, you need the practice... Write this guy out without my
comments.
TRY IT:
Prove

OK, here's a different type... Same process, it just works differently because
it's a different kind of formula to prove. It's one of our old algebra buddies!

Prove

Show is true:

So, is true.

Assume is true:
is true

Show

So,
Thus, is true.

Write this guy out without my comments. Think about each step!

TRY IT:
Prove

Sequences & Series Lesson 10 - The


Binomial Theorem
Remember that a binomial is a polynomial with two terms

Let's look at the a + b guy for a bit... Specifically, powers of a + b:


Here's where the work starts!

Man! I'm sick of this! Watch me start popping these things out by magic:

See how I'm doing it?

Four things are going on:


The a guys start at the original power and step down one each time...

The b guys do the opposite...

The powers on all the ab sets add up to the original power...

What about the coefficients?

What's going on there?

Let's write them all out to see if we can find a pattern...


What's the trick?

What's the next line?

Ones on the edge... add the two guys above!


Whoa!

So, can you write out the expansion of ?

Now that you have the idea, we can do some other expansions. We'll just
change the a and b.

Let's expand

From Pascal's triangle, we'll use these coefficients:

Here we go!

Since this is a number, we'll have some clean-up.

YOUR TURN:

Expand

They just get messier -- not much worse.

Expand
Look at it like

Our coefficients:

YOUR TURN:

Expand

We'll be revisiting these guys in the next chapter. We just need some more
ammunition!