Alg_Factoring

Alg_Factoring - Preface Here are my online notes for my...

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Preface Here are my online notes for my Algebra course that I teach here at Lamar University, although I have to admit that it’s been years since I last taught this course. At this point in my career I mostly teach Calculus and Differential Equations. Despite the fact that these are my “class notes”, they should be accessible to anyone wanting to learn Algebra or needing a refresher for algebra. I’ve tried to make the notes as self contained as possible and do not reference any book. However, they do assume that you’ve has some exposure to the basics of algebra at some point prior to this. While there is some review of exponents, factoring and graphing it is assumed that not a lot of review will be needed to remind you how these topics work. Here are a couple of warnings to my students who may be here to get a copy of what happened on a day that you missed. 1. Because I wanted to make this a fairly complete set of notes for anyone wanting to learn algebra I have included some material that I do not usually have time to cover in class and because this changes from semester to semester it is not noted here. You will need to find one of your fellow class mates to see if there is something in these notes that wasn’t covered in class. 2. Because I want these notes to provide some more examples for you to read through, I don’t always work the same problems in class as those given in the notes. Likewise, even if I do work some of the problems in here I may work fewer problems in class than are presented here. 3. Sometimes questions in class will lead down paths that are not covered here. I try to anticipate as many of the questions as possible in writing these up, but the reality is that I can’t anticipate all the questions. Sometimes a very good question gets asked in class that leads to insights that I’ve not included here. You should always talk to someone who was in class on the day you missed and compare these notes to their notes and see what the differences are. 4. This is somewhat related to the previous three items, but is important enough to merit its own item. THESE NOTES ARE NOT A SUBSTITUTE FOR ATTENDING CLASS!! Using these notes as a substitute for class is liable to get you in trouble. As already noted not everything in these notes is covered in class and often material or insights not in these notes is covered in class.
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Factoring Polynomials Of all the topics covered in this chapter factoring polynomials is probably the most important topic. There are many sections in later chapters where the first step will be to factor a polynomial. So, if you can’t factor the polynomial then you won’t be able to even start the problem let alone finish it. Let’s start out by talking a little bit about just what factoring is. Factoring is the process by which we go about determining what we multiplied to get the given quantity. We do this all the time with numbers. For instance, here are a variety of ways to factor 12.
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Alg_Factoring - Preface Here are my online notes for my...

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