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**• Everywhere, at home, in school, or in the
**

market, the word set is already a

byword.

• Whenever we talk of a collection of

appliances, books, flowers, players,

scholars, kitchen utensils, heroes, and

the like, we are using the concept of set

loosely.

• In mathematics, we also talk of sets such

as sets of numbers, set of geometric

figures, set of geometric theorems, and

solution sets. In this chapter, we shall

consider the mathematical definition of

sets and the different operations on sets.

SETS

• A set is a well-defined collection of distinct

objects referred to as members or elements of

the set.

• For example, we have the set of planets, the

set of continents in the world, the set of colors

in the rainbow, the set of even numbers, the

set of real numbers, the set of factors of 36,

and so on.

• Sets are represented by capital letters and

their elements are enclosed by braces { }.

• Set Notations

• Sets can be described in two ways, namely,

the roster or listing method and the rule

method. Obviously, the roster method is

done by enumerating the elements of the

set.

• For example, we have

• A = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5},

• V = {a, e, i, o, u},

• C = {1, 2, 3, …}.

• The three dots in C, called ellipsis, are used to

indicate that the list is to continue

indefinitely to include other numbers

following the same pattern shown in the first

few terms.

• The rule method for describing sets is done by

stating either a rule, a definition or a condition

that will make it clear that an object belongs

to the set. Sometimes, it is written in the

"set-builder" notation , that is,

• A= {x,x is a natural number

• less than 6}

• read as "set A of all x’s such that x",

where x is the variable, the vertical

bar (,) replaces the words "such that"

and the given set A is called the

replacement set of the variable x.

• The variable x is to be replaced by a

name of an element of the set. Any

lower case (small) letter may be used as

the variable.

• In case the elements of a set are

letters, these are written in lower

case.

Roster Method Rule Method

Set-Builder

Notation

1. C = {2, 4,

6, 8}

C is the set of

even counting

numbers less

than 10.

C = {x|x is an

even counting

number less

than 10}

2. M = {m, o,

n, d, a, y}

M is the set of

letters in the

word Monday

M = {x|x is

a letter in

the word

Monday}

3. O = {1, 3, 9}

O is the set of

odd divisors of

36.

O = {x|x is

an odd divisor

of 36}

• To indicate that an element belongs to a

given set, the Greek letter epsilon, e, is

used.

• For example, 8 e C (read 8 is an

element of C or 8 belongs to C), m e M,

and 9 e O.

• However, 3 e C (read 3 is not an element

of C), x e M, and 5 e O.

• The number of elements in a set A is

called the cardinal number or

cardinality of A and this is denoted

by n(A).

• For example, n(D) = 7 and n(M) = 12,

where D is the set of days of the

week and M is the set of months of

the year.

Drill Exercises

• A. Give the cardinality of each of the following sets and

enumerate its elements:

• 1. The lady presidents of the Philippines

• 2. The sense organs

• 3. The suits of a deck of cards

• 4. The Philippine coins in the new millennium

• B. Give two sets with exactly:

• 1. 1 element

• 2. 2 elements

• 3. 3 elements

• C. Using the roster method, write the elements of the set

• 1. E of all even prime numbers.

• 2. M of all multiples of 5 less than 30.

• 3. D of all positive composite divisors of 54.

• 4. E of all even factors of 36.

• 5. O of all odd divisors of 24.

• D. Describe each of the following sets:

• 1. M = {January, March, May, July, August,

• October, December}

• 2. N = {3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18}

• 3. O = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6}

• 4. P = { a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, j}

• 5. Q = {2}

• Use the set builder notation to describe the sets D

above.

• Use the roster method to specify the following

sets:

• A = {a,a is a counting number less than 8}

• B = {b,b is a positive divisor of 48}

• C = {c,c is a positive multiple of 12 less than 50}

• D = {d,d is common factor of 42 and 96}

• E = {e,e is a positive number less than 100 that is

divisible by 7}

Kinds of Sets

• Sets are classified as follows:

• Empty set or null set is a set without any

element or member.

• For example, the set of odd numbers divisible

by 2 is an empty set. This is denoted by { } or

| and its cardinality is 0.

• Unit set is a set with only one

element.

• For example, the set of months with

less than 30 days consists of only one

element which is February.

• Finite set is a set that contains a definite

number of elements.

• Thus, a finite set contains a countable

number of elements as in

• 1. the set of factors of 54,

• 2. the set of students in a certain classroom,

or

• 3. the set of consonants in the English

alphabet.

• Infinite set is a set that does not contain a

countable number of elements.

• As in the case of the set of integers.

• Universal set is the totality of all the

elements under discussion and it is denoted

by the capital letter U.

• For example, if V is the set of vowels and C is

the set of consonants, then U is set of all the

letters in the English alphabet, that is,

• U = {a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, j, k, l, m, n, o, p, q, r,

s, t, u, v, w, x, y, z}.

Relationships Between Pairs of Sets

• Two or more sets may be classified as follows:

• Disjoint sets are sets which have no element

in common.

• Sets V and C , where V is the set of vowels

and C is the set of consonants, are disjoint

sets.

• Equal sets are sets that have exactly the same

elements, regardless of the order the

elements are listed.

• For example,

• if X = {a, b, c, d, e}

• and Y = {b, c, a, e, d},

then X = Y.

• Equivalent sets are sets that have the same

cardinality, that is, the elements of one set can

be matched, one-to-one, with the elements

of another set.

• For example, sets

• M = {a, b, c, d, e}

• and N = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5} are equivalent sets.

• We can associate each element of M with an

element of N as shown below.

• M = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5}

• N = {a, b, c, d, e}

• The double-headed arrows indicate one

possible matching between the elements of

sets M and N.

• Note that n(M) = 5 and n(N) = 5.

• Symbolically, we write M ~ N.

EXERCISES

• 1. Are equal sets equivalent?

• 2. Are two equivalent sets equal?.

• 3. Are two empty sets

equivalent? equal?

Subsets

• Set A is a subset of set B if for every element

of A is an element of B.

• In symbols, we write

• A c B (read as "A is a subset of B").

• We say that A c B if and only if for

every x e A, x e B.

• If A c B, we may also write

• B A, and say that A is contained in B

or B contains A or B is a superset of

A.

• If A c B and A = B, we say that A is a

proper subset of B.

• The symbol A c B means that every

element of A belongs to B and B

contains at least one element not

found in A.

• We say that A c B if and only if for every x e

A, x e B, there exists some y e B such that

y e A.

• For example, if

• A = {1, 2, 3, 4},

• B = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5} and

• C = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7},

• then A c C, A c B and B c C.

• On the other hand,

• if A c B and B A and that A = B, then A is an

improper subset of B and B is an

improper subset of A. In symbols, we write

• A B and B A.

• Now consider M = {1, 2, 3}, then

N = {1, 2} is a subset of M.

• How many subsets has M?

• Notice that it is possible to have subsets of 1

element, 2 elements, and 3 elements, that is,

{1}, {2}, {3}, {1, 2}, {1, 3}, {2, 3},

• {1, 2, 3}.

• In fact a set is a subset of itself.

• Also, the empty set { } is a subset of M since

there is no element of an empty set which is

not an element of M.

• The empty set is a subset of every set.

• The empty set and the set itself are called

trivial subsets of any given set.

• How many subsets does a set have?

• This can be answered by listing the

subsets of a set with 1 element, 2

elements, 3 elements, and so on and

then observing patterns.

Sets Number of

Elements

Number of

Subsets

A = {a} 1 2

B = {a, b} 2 4

C = {a, b, c}

D = {a, b, c, d}

3

4

8

16

• Observe that the total number of subsets of

any given set may be determined by the

formula 2

n

, where n is the cardinality or

the number of elements of the set.

• Since n(A) = 1, the number of subsets of A is

2

1

= 2.

• The number of subsets of B is 2

2

= 4 since n(B)

= 2.

• Similarly, the number of subsets of C is 2

3

=

8 since n(C) = 3, while the number of subsets

of

• D is 2

4

= 16 since n(D) = 4.

Exercises

• A. Indicate the kind of sets described in each of the

following:

• 1. the positive integers divisible by 10

• 2. the three-digit natural numbers

• 3. the even prime numbers

• 4. the seats in a certain movie house

• 5. the qualified voters in a certain precinct

• Given: A = {1, 2, 3, 4}.

• Write T if the statement is true and F if the

statement is false.

• 1. 2 e A

• 2. A c A

• 3. | e A

• 4. {4} c A

• 5. {2, 3} e A

• 6. 1 c A

• 7. | c A

• 8. 1, 4 e A

• 9. A e A

• 10. 5 e A

e

OPERATIONS AND RELATIONS ON

SETS

• The relations between and among sets

can be represented pictorially by using

the Venn diagram which was introduced

by James Venn, an English logician.

• A Venn diagram usually consists

of a rectangle which represents

the universal set U and closed

curves drawn within the

rectangle to represent subsets of

U.

• The rectangle represents the universal set U

and

• the circle represents the subset A with

elements written inside

• the circle.

• Notice that x e A and a e U,

• but a e U and a e A.

• Therefore, A c U.

• Consider the following sets:

• U = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9},

• A = {1, 2, 4, 6, 8}, and

• B = { 1, 3, 4, 5, 7}.

• Let us draw the Venn diagram that will

represent the relationship among these sets.

• Notice that the elements common to

sets A and B are found in the region

where the circles overlap while the

elements that belong to the

universal set U, but not to set A or

set B are found inside the rectangle

but outside the circles.

Operations on Sets

• Consider two sets A and B which are

subsets of the universal set U.

• The union of two sets A and B, denoted

by A B (read as "A union B"), is the set

of all elements found in A or in B or in

both A and B.

• In symbols, we write

• A B = {x,x e A or x e B}.

• For example, if

• A = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5} and

• B = {2, 4, 6, 8}. then

A B = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8}.

• The intersection of two sets A and B,

denoted by A · B

• (read as "A intersection B"), is the set of all

elements common to both A and B.

• In symbols, we write

• A · B = {x,x e A and x e B}.

• Using the preceding example, we see that A

· B = {2, 4}.

• The complement of a set A, denoted by A’

(read as "A complement" or "A prime"), is

the set of all elements in U that are not

found in A, that is,

• A’ = {x,x e U and x e A}.

• With A = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5} and

• U = {1, 2, 3,4 5, 6, 7, 8, 9},

• A’ = {6, 7, 8, 9}.

• What is A A’ ? A · A’?

• The difference of two sets A and B, denoted by

A – B (read as "A minus B"), is the set of all

elements found in A but not in B. In symbols,

we write

• A – B = {x,x e A and x e B}.

• Thus, if A = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5} and

• B = {2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9}, then

• A – B = {1, 3, 5} and

• B – A = {6, 7, 8, 9}.

• The cross product of two sets A and

B, denoted by A × B (read as “A cross

B”), is the set of ordered pairs (x, y)

such that x e A and y e B. Every

element of A is paired with every

element of B in that particular order.

• If A = {1, 2} and

• B = {3, 4}, then

• A × B = {(1, 3), (1, 4),

• (2, 3), (2, 4)}

• and

• B × A = {(3, 1), (3, 2),

• (4, 1), (4, 2)}

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