1

INEQUALITIES

INTRODUCTION
If a and b are real numbers then we can compare their positions
by the relation…
Less than <
Greater than >
Less than or equal to ≤
Greater than or equal to ≥

For example: if x > 3 , it means x can be any value more than 3

up
down
Solid
line
Dashed
line
> s
>
<
WHERE :

1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
y = x
y = x

y > x
1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
y > x

y s x
1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
y s x

y = x + 1
1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
y = x + 1

y > x + 1
1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
y > x + 1

y s x + 1
1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
y s x + 1

y > x + 1
1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
y > x + 1

y < x + 1
1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
y < x + 1

x > 2
1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
x > 2

1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
4
WRITE THE EQUATION

1
2
3
– 1
– 2
– 3
3 2 1 – 1 – 2 – 3
4
WRITE THE EQUATION

PROPERTIES OF INEQUALITIES
If ‘a’ is greater than ‘b’
If we add ‘c’ (any real number) then which one is greater
A + c or b + c
Solution: (a + c) is greater than b + c

You know 8 is greater than 4 or 8 > 4
8 + 2 > 4 + 2
10 > 6
TRUE
EXAMPLE

If ‘a’ is greater than ‘b’
If we subtract ‘c’ (any real number) then which one is greater
a – c or b – c
Solution: (a – c) is greater than b – c
PROPERTIES OF INEQUALITIES

You know 8 is greater than 4 or
8 > 4
Subtract
2
from both sides
8 – 2 > 4 – 2
6 > 2
TRUE
EXAMPLE

If ‘a’ is greater than ‘b’ i.e. (a > b)
If we multiply by ‘c’ (any real number) then which one is
greater
ac or bc ?
Depends upon ‘c’ because c can be a positive or negative real
number
PROPERTIES OF INEQUALITIES

You know 8 is greater than 4 or
8 > 4
Multiply by
2
both sides
8(2) > 4(2)
16 > 8
TRUE
EXAMPLE

You know 8 is greater than 4 or
8 > 4
Multiply by
– 2
both sides
8(– 2) > 4(– 2)
– 16 > – 8
FALSE
EXAMPLE

If ‘a’ is greater than ‘b’
WHICH IS GREATER
ac or bc
If c is positive then ac > bc
If c is negative then ac < bc
REMEMBER

If ‘a’ is greater than ‘b’
WHICH IS GREATER

or

Is Greater than
a
1
b
1
b
1
a
1
REMEMBER

We know that 8 is greater than 4 or
8 > 4
Take reciprocals
on both sides
4
1
8
1
<
REMEMBER

• Transitive: If a < b and b < c, then a < c
• Addition of inequalities: If a < b and
c < d, then a + c < b + d.
• Addition of a constant: If a < b, then
a + c < b + c.
• Multiplication by a constant:
• If a < b and c is positive real number, then: ac < bc
and if c is negative real number, then ac > bc
• Taking Reciprocals: If a < b and a, b ≠ 0, then

PROPERTIES OF INEQUALITIES
b
1
a
1
>

Inequality
notation
Real number line graph
3 < x
3 s x
5 2 s < ÷ x
3 > x
3 > x
INTERVAL NOTATION

You solve linear inequalities in the same way as you would solve
linear equations, but with one exception.

Property: If in the process of solving an inequality, you multiply
or divide the inequality by a negative number, then , you must
switch the direction of the inequality.

If – x > a, then x < – a.
SOLVING LINEAR INEQUATIONS

Solve x + 3 < 2.
Graphically

SOLVING LINEAR INEQUATIONS
CASE-1
When the equation was "x + 3 = 2“ type,
We normally subtract 3 from both sides.

Then the solution is: x < –1
X + 3 < 2
- 3 -3
-------------------------

Solve 2x < 9.
Like inequality divide by 2
CASE-2
5 . 4
2
9
x
2
9
2
x 2
9 x 2
= s
s
s

What happens when the number is negative?
27 x 3 < ÷
If you divide both sides by – 3,
3
27
3
x 3
÷
>
÷
÷
9 x ÷ >
(The inequality will change if we multiply or divide with a
negative number on both sides.)
CASE-3

Solve the followings:

1. 3x – 4 > 8

2. – 6x – 18 < – 24

Answers: 1. x > 4 2. x > 1

EXAMPLE

When we have an inequality with "x
2
" as the highest-
degree term, it is called a "quadratic inequality".
Solve x
2
– 3x + 2 > 0
Step 1: Change the inequality to an equation. Find x- intercept
x
2
– 3x + 2 = 0
(x – 1) (x – 2) = 0
x = 1 or 2
Step 2: Plot the points ( x = 1, 2) on the number line
÷ 3 ÷ 2 ÷ 1 0 1 2 3
The number line is divided into the intervals (- ∞, 1), (1, 2),
and (2, ∞).
1 2

x
2
– 3x + 2 > 0 or (x – 1) (x – 2) > 0
The number line is divided into the intervals (- ∞, 1), (1, 2),
and (2, ∞).
1 2
Test-point method: Pick a point (any point) in each interval
x = 3
(x - 1) is positive (x - 1) (x - 2) is positive (x - 3) is positive POSITIVE
x = 1.5
(x - 1) is negative (x - 1) (x - 2) is negative (x - 3) is positive NEGATIVE
x = 0
(x - 1) is negative
(x - 1) (x - 2) is positive
(x - 2) is negative POSITIVE
(x – 1) (x – 2) is positive when x > 2 or x < 1
1 2

x
2
x or
You can’t say
Lets find the interval
where x
2
is greater than
x
WHICH ONE IS GREATER?

For what value of x ? x
2
– x ≥ 0 or (x) (x – 1) ≥ 0
Step 1: Change the inequality to an equation. Find value of x
x = 0, 1
x
2
– x = 0
Step 2: Plot the points
0 1
Step 3: Test point method
0 1
At x =2 At x =0.5 At x =-1
+ ─
+
0 1
Step 4: Solution x > 1 or x < 0
SOLUTION

You can solve some absolute-value equations
using logics. For instance, you have learned
that the equation |x| = 8 has two solutions: 8
and ÷ 8.
SOLVING ABSOLUTE-VALUE EQUATIONS
To solve absolute-value equations, you can use the fact
that the expression inside the absolute value symbols
can be either positive or negative.

Because I X I = + X if X > 0
- X If X < 0
0 if X = 0

SOLVING AN ABSOLUTE-VALUE EQUATION
Solve | x ÷ 2 | = 5

x ÷ 2 IS POSITIVE
| x ÷ 2 | = 5
x = 7 x = ÷3
x ÷ 2 IS NEGATIVE
| x ÷ 2 | = 5
| 7 ÷ 2 | = | 5 | = 5 | ÷3 ÷ 2 | = | ÷5 | = 5
The expression x ÷ 2 can be equal to 5 or ÷5.
x ÷ 2 = +5
x ÷ 2 IS POSITIVE
x ÷ 2 = +5
Solve | x ÷ 2 | = 5
The expression x ÷ 2 can be equal to 5 or ÷5.
SOLUTION
x ÷ 2 = ÷5
x ÷ 2 IS POSITIVE
| x ÷ 2 | = 5
x ÷ 2 = +5
x = 7
x ÷ 2 IS POSITIVE
| x ÷ 2 | = 5
x ÷ 2 = +5
x = 7
x ÷ 2 IS NEGATIVE
x ÷ 2 = ÷5
x = ÷3
x ÷ 2 IS NEGATIVE
| x ÷ 2 | = 5
x ÷ 2 = ÷5
The equation has two solutions: 7 and –3.
CHECK

Recall that x is the distance between x and 0. If x < 8, then
any number between ÷8 and 8 is a solution of the inequality.
÷ 8 ÷ 7 ÷ 6 ÷ 5 ÷ 4 ÷ 3 ÷ 2 ÷ 1 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
You can use the following properties to solve
absolute-value inequalities and equations.
Recall that | x | is the distance between x and 0. If | x | < 8, then
any number between ÷8 and 8 is a solution of the inequality.
Recall that | x | is the distance between x and 0. If | x | < 8,
then any number between ÷8 and 8 is a solution of the
inequality.

SOLVING ABSOLUTE-VALUE EQUATIONS AND INEQUALITIES
a x + b < c and a x + b > ÷ c.
a x + b s c and a x + b > ÷ c.
a x + b = c or a x + b = ÷ c.
a x + b > c or a x + b < ÷ c.
a x + b > c or a x + b s ÷ c.
| a x + b | < c
| a x + b | s c
| a x + b | = c
| a x + b | > c
| a x + b | > c
means
means
means
means
means
means
means
means
means
means
When an absolute value is less than a number, the
inequalities are connected by and. When an absolute
value is greater than a number, the inequalities are
connected by or.
SOLVING ABSOLUTE-VALUE INEQUALITIES

Solve | x ÷ 4 | < 3
x ÷ 4 IS POSITIVE x ÷ 4 IS NEGATIVE
| x ÷ 4 | < 3
x ÷ 4 < +3
x < 7
| x ÷ 4 | < 3
x ÷ 4 > ÷3
x > 1
Reverse
inequality symbol.
>
This can be written as 1 < x < 7.
The solution is all real numbers greater than 1 and less than 7.
EXAMPLE

2x + 1 s ÷9
| 2x + 1 | ÷3 > 6
| 2x + 1 | > 9
2x s ÷10
2x + 1 IS NEGATIVE
s
x s ÷5
Solve | 2x + 1 | ÷3 > 6 and graph the solution.
| 2x + 1 | ÷ 3 > 6
| 2x + 1 | > 9
2x + 1 > +9
2x > 8
2x + 1 IS POSITIVE
x > 4
SOLVING AN ABSOLUTE-VALUE INEQUALITY
Reverse
inequality symbol.
| 2x + 1 | ÷ 3 > 6
| 2x + 1 | > 9
2x + 1 > +9
x > 4
2x > 8
| 2x + 1 | ÷3 > 6
| 2x + 1 | > 9
2x + 1 s ÷9
2x s ÷10
x s ÷5
2x + 1 IS POSITIVE 2x + 1 IS NEGATIVE
÷ 6 ÷ 5 ÷ 4 ÷ 3 ÷ 2 ÷ 1 0 1 2 3 4 5 6
The solution is all real numbers greater than or equal
to 4 or less than or equal to ÷ 5. This can be written as
the compound inequality x s ÷ 5 or x > 4. ÷ 5 4.

SOLVING THE INEQUALITIES WITH
THE HELP OF OPTIONS
We can solve all the inequality questions by going with the
options.
Take an example:
x
2
– 7x + 10 < 0
(1) X < 2 (2) x > 5 (3) x < 5
(4) 2 < x < 5 (5) Both (1) and (2)

SOLUTION
Since the first option is x < 2, we take x = 1 and check whether
the given inequality is satisfying or not.
If x = 1, 1
2
– 7(1) + 10 < 0
4 < 0 (wrong)
Option (1), (3) and (5) are wrong.
Now take x = 6,
6
2
– 7 × 6 + 10 < 0
4 < 0 (wrong)
So, option (2) is wrong.

QUANTITATIVE COMPARISON
QUESTIONS
• 2 < x < 3 and - 6 < y < - 5

Which is greater?
x
4
y or xy
4
Column A will always be negative where B is always positive.

EXAMPLE
If |x – 3| > 2, which will be greater?
Column A Column B
|x| 2
|x – 3| > 2 means x > 5 or x < 1
If x > 5, |x| > 2
But if x < 1, we can’t say