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Topic: Re: quadratic formula
Replies: 1   Last Post: May 2, 2001 1:13 PM

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Posts: 10,730
Registered: 12/3/04
Re: quadratic formula
Posted: May 1, 2001 11:46 AM
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In a message dated 5/1/2001 11:25:22 AM Eastern Daylight Time, gaff@NEU.EDU

> The quadratic formula comes into its own when dealing with quadratic
> functions that contain parameters; for example if you want to derive the
> formula for the time a projectile is in the air, or if you want to study
> families of functions. If students haven't developed to the point that
> they can appreciate problems like this then they probably won't be able to
> understand the value of the quadratic formula, and won't remember it.

But remember that CAS like the TI89/92+ can solve quadratic and other
equations with parameters in terms of the parameters. In fact if you ask it
to solve a*x^2 + b*x + c = 0 it will give you the quadratic formula. It will
also solve for the parameters in terms of x and the other parameters. The
value, IMHO, is in the solution, not in the method of solution.


Lin McMullin
Niantic, CT.

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