A - Definition of a quadratic function A quadratic function f is a function of the form f(x) = ax2 + bx + c where a, b and c are real numbers and

a not equal to zero. The graph of the quadratic function is called a parabola. It is a "U" shaped curve that may open up or down depending on the sign of coefficient a. Examples of quadratic functions
a. f(x) = -2x2 + x - 1 b. f(x) = x2 + 3x + 2

B - Standard form of a quadratic function and vertex Any quadratic function can be written in the standard form f(x) = a(x - h)2 + k where h and k are given in terms of coefficients a, b and c. Let us start with the quadratic function in general form and complete the square to rewrite it in standard form.

Given function f(x) f(x) = ax2 + bx + c factor coefficient a out of the terms in x2 and x f(x) = a[ x2 + (b/a)x ] + c add and subtract (b/2a)2 inside the parentheses f(x) = a[ x2 + (b/a)x + (b/2a)2 - (b/2a)2 ] + c Note that x2 + (b/a)x + (b/2a)2

b2/(4a) When you graph a quadratic function.(-1)2) + 1 add and subtract (-1)2 within the parentheses f(x) = -2(x2 .a(b/2a)2 + c which can be written as f(x) = a[ x + (b/2a) ]2 . • • • • • . Example : Write the quadratic function f given by f(x) = -2x2 + 4x + 1 in standard form and find the vertex of the graph. The x and y coordinates of the vertex are given by h and k respectively.2x + (-1)2) + 2 + 1 group like terms and write in standard form f(x) = -2(x . Solution • given function f(x) = -2x2 + 4x + 1 factor -2 out f(x) = -2(x2 .1)2 + 3 The above gives h = 1 and k = 3.2x) + 1 We now divide the coefficient of x which is -2 by 2 and that gives -1.(b2/4a) + c This is the standard form of a quadratic function with h = -b/(2a) • • • k = c .• can be written as [x + (b/2a)]2 We now write f as follows f(x) = a[ x + (b/2a) ]2 . f(x) = -2(x2 .2x + (-1)2 . the graph will either have a maximum or a minimum point called the vertex.

h(x) = -2x2 + 2x .4ac is positive.3 = 0 discriminant D = 22 .x intercepts of the graph of a quadratic function The x intercepts of the graph of a quadratic function f given by f(x) = ax2 + bx + c are the real solutions.3). C .4*1*(-3) = 16 two real solutions: x1 = (-2 + sqrt(16))/(2*1) = 1 . It has one repeated solution when D is equal to zero. h = -b/2a = -4/(2*-2) = 1 k = c . of the quadratic equation ax2 + bx + c = 0 The above equation has two real solutions and therefore the graph has x intercepts when the discriminant D = b2 .• h and k can also be found using the formulas for h and k obtained above.1 c. g(x) = -x2 + 2x . if they exist. f(x) = x2 + 2x . The solutions are given by the quadratic formulas x1 = (-b + sqrt(D))/2a and x2 = (-b .2 Solution a. To find the x intercepts.sqrt(D))/2a Example: Find the x intercepts for the graph of each function given below a. we solve x2 + 2x .3 b.b2/(4a) = 1 .42/(4*-2) = 3 • The vertex of the graph is at (1.

f(x) = x2 + 2x .1).4*(-1)*(-1) = 0 one repeated real solutions x1 = -b/2a = -2/-2 = 1 The graph of function in part b) has one x intercept at (1.and x2 = (-2 . . g(0) = 1. h(0) = 4. a.1 = 0 discriminant D = 22 . We solve -x2 + 2x . The graph of f has a y intercept at (0.0) b.0) and (3. Example: Find the y intercept of the graph of the following quadratic functions. c.4*(-2)*(-2) = -12 No real solutions for the above equation No x intercept for the graph of function in part c). We solve -2x2 + 2x .2 = 0 discriminant D = 22 . b.x + 1 c.4). f(0) = -3.0).-3). h(x) = -x2 + 4x + 4 Solution a.3 b. The graph of g has a y intercept at (0.sqrt(16))/(2*1) = -3 The graph of function in part a) has two x intercepts are at the points (1.y intercepts of the graph of a quadratic function The y intercept of the graph of a quadratic function is given by f(0) = c. g(x) = 4x2 . The graph of h has a y intercept at (0. c. D .

6).E . method 1: The above graph has two x intercepts at (-3.0) and (-1. The x coordinates of the x intercepts can be used to write the equation of function f as follows: f(x) = a(x + 3)(x + 1) We now use the y intercept f(0) = 6 6 = a(0 + 3)(0 + 1) and solve for a to find a = 2. -2) and a y intercept at (0. The standard (or .6). The formula for the quadratic function f is given by : f(x) = 2(x + 3)(x + 1) = 2x 2 + 8 x + 6 method 2: The above parabola has a vertex at (-2 .Exercises: Find the equation of a quadratic function given its graph Example: Find the graph of the quadratic function f whose graph is shown below.0) and a y intercept at (0.

b + 6 = 0 Solve the last two equations in a and b to obtain a = 2 and b = 8 and gives . 0) gives f(-3) = a(-3)2 + b(-3) + 6 which leads to 9 a . Solve for a to find a = 2. 0) and (0 . The formula for the quadratic function f is given by : f(x) = 2(x + 2) 2 .3 b + 6 = 0 and (-1 . 6) gives f(0) = 6 = a(0)2 + b(0) + c = c solve for c to obtain c = 6 The two other points gives two more equations (-3 .vertex) form of a quadratic function f can be written f(x) = a(x + 2) 2 .2. The following points are on the graph of f (-3 .2 = 2x 2 + 8 x + 6 method 3: Since a quadratic function has the form f(x) = ax2 + bx + c we need 3 points on the graph of f in order to write 3 equations and solve for a. 0) .2 We use the y intercept f(0) = 6 6 = a(0 + 2) 2 . b and c. 0) gives f(-3) = a(-1)2 + b(-1) + 6 which becomes a . (-1 . 6) point (0 .

g(x) = -x2 + 2x .sqrt(16))/(2*1) = -3 .3 = 0 discriminant D = 22 . It has one repeated solution when D is equal to zero. The solutions are given by the quadratic formulas x1 = (-b + sqrt(D))/2a and x2 = (-b . therefore question. You can generate as many graph.2 Solution a.1 c.4ac is positive. C .sqrt(D))/2a Example: Find the x intercepts for the graph of each function given below a. h(x) = -2x2 + 2x .4*1*(-3) = 16 two real solutions: x1 = (-2 + sqrt(16))/(2*1) = 1 and x2 = (-2 . To find the x intercepts.x intercepts of the graph of a quadratic function The x intercepts of the graph of a quadratic function f given by f(x) = ax2 + bx + c are the real solutions.3 b. if they exist. we solve x2 + 2x .f(x) = 2x 2 + 8 x + 6 Go back to the applet above. f(x) = x2 + 2x . of the quadratic equation ax2 + bx + c = 0 The above equation has two real solutions and therefore the graph has x intercepts when the discriminant D = b2 . generate a graph and find its equation. as you wish.

0) and (3. D .1).2 = 0 discriminant D = 22 .The graph of function in part a) has two x intercepts are at the points (1. h(0) = 4.4*(-2)*(-2) = -12 No real solutions for the above equation No x intercept for the graph of function in part c).1 = 0 discriminant D = 22 .y intercepts of the graph of a quadratic function The y intercept of the graph of a quadratic function is given by f(0) = c. c.4). . h(x) = -x2 + 4x + 4 Solution a. c. f(x) = x2 + 2x . g(x) = 4x2 . The graph of g has a y intercept at (0. f(0) = -3. The graph of h has a y intercept at (0.4*(-1)*(-1) = 0 one repeated real solutions x1 = -b/2a = -2/-2 = 1 The graph of function in part b) has one x intercept at (1. g(0) = 1. Example: Find the y intercept of the graph of the following quadratic functions.3 b. a.Exercises: Find the equation of a quadratic function given its graph Example: Find the graph of the quadratic function f whose graph is shown below. We solve -2x2 + 2x .-3). We solve -x2 + 2x .x + 1 c.0) b. b. The graph of f has a y intercept at (0.0). E .

The x coordinates of the x intercepts can be used to write the equation of function f as follows: f(x) = a(x + 3)(x + 1) We now use the y intercept f(0) = 6 6 = a(0 + 3)(0 + 1) and solve for a to find a = 2.0) and a y intercept at (0.6).Solution There are several methods to answer the above question but all of them have one idea in common: you need to understand and then select the right information from the graph.0) and (-1. method 1: The above graph has two x intercepts at (-3. The standard (or vertex) form of a quadratic function f can be written . The formula for the quadratic function f is given by : f(x) = 2(x + 3)(x + 1) = 2x 2 + 8 x + 6 method 2: The above parabola has a vertex at (-2 .6). -2) and a y intercept at (0.

0) gives f(-3) = a(-3)2 + b(-3) + 6 which leads to 9 a . (-1 .b + 6 = 0 Solve the last two equations in a and b to obtain a = 2 and b = 8 and gives f(x) = 2x 2 + 8 x + 6 . 6) point (0 .2 We use the y intercept f(0) = 6 6 = a(0 + 2) 2 .3 b + 6 = 0 and (-1 .2 = 2x 2 + 8 x + 6 method 3: Since a quadratic function has the form f(x) = ax2 + bx + c we need 3 points on the graph of f in order to write 3 equations and solve for a. 6) gives f(0) = 6 = a(0)2 + b(0) + c = c solve for c to obtain c = 6 The two other points gives two more equations (-3 . The following points are on the graph of f (-3 . The formula for the quadratic function f is given by : f(x) = 2(x + 2) 2 . b and c. Solve for a to find a = 2.2.f(x) = a(x + 2) 2 . 0) gives f(-3) = a(-1)2 + b(-1) + 6 which becomes a . 0) . 0) and (0 .