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Access these online resources for additional instruction and practice with exponential functions.

Key equations

definition of the exponential function f ( x ) = b x ,  where   b > 0 ,   b 1
definition of exponential growth f ( x ) = a b x ,  where  a > 0 , b > 0 , b 1
compound interest formula A ( t ) = P ( 1 + r n ) n t   ,  where A ( t )  is the account value at time  t t  is the number of years P  is the initial investment, often called the principal r  is the annual percentage rate (APR), or nominal rate n  is the number of compounding periods in one year
continuous growth formula A ( t ) = a e r t ,  where
t is the number of unit time periods of growth
a is the starting amount (in the continuous compounding formula a is replaced with P, the principal)
e is the mathematical constant,     e 2.718282

Key concepts

  • An exponential function is defined as a function with a positive constant other than 1 raised to a variable exponent. See [link] .
  • A function is evaluated by solving at a specific value. See [link] and [link] .
  • An exponential model can be found when the growth rate and initial value are known. See [link] .
  • An exponential model can be found when the two data points from the model are known. See [link] .
  • An exponential model can be found using two data points from the graph of the model. See [link] .
  • An exponential model can be found using two data points from the graph and a calculator. See [link] .
  • The value of an account at any time t can be calculated using the compound interest formula when the principal, annual interest rate, and compounding periods are known. See [link] .
  • The initial investment of an account can be found using the compound interest formula when the value of the account, annual interest rate, compounding periods, and life span of the account are known. See [link] .
  • The number e is a mathematical constant often used as the base of real world exponential growth and decay models. Its decimal approximation is e 2.718282.
  • Scientific and graphing calculators have the key [ e x ] or [ exp ( x ) ] for calculating powers of e . See [link] .
  • Continuous growth or decay models are exponential models that use e as the base. Continuous growth and decay models can be found when the initial value and growth or decay rate are known. See [link] and [link] .

Section exercises

Verbal

Explain why the values of an increasing exponential function will eventually overtake the values of an increasing linear function.

Linear functions have a constant rate of change. Exponential functions increase based on a percent of the original.

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Given a formula for an exponential function, is it possible to determine whether the function grows or decays exponentially just by looking at the formula? Explain.

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The Oxford Dictionary defines the word nominal as a value that is “stated or expressed but not necessarily corresponding exactly to the real value.” Oxford Dictionary. http://oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/nomina. Develop a reasonable argument for why the term nominal rate is used to describe the annual percentage rate of an investment account that compounds interest.

When interest is compounded, the percentage of interest earned to principal ends up being greater than the annual percentage rate for the investment account. Thus, the annual percentage rate does not necessarily correspond to the real interest earned, which is the very definition of nominal .

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Questions & Answers

find the value of 2x=32
Felix Reply
divide by 2 on each side of the equal sign to solve for x
corri
X=16
Michael
Want to review on complex number 1.What are complex number 2.How to solve complex number problems.
Beyan
use the y -intercept and slope to sketch the graph of the equation y=6x
Only Reply
how do we prove the quadratic formular
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Tric Reply
4
Trista
x-2y+3z=-3 2x-y+z=7 -x+3y-z=6
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Need help solving this problem (2/7)^-2
Simone Reply
x+2y-z=7
Sidiki
what is the coefficient of -4×
Mehri Reply
-1
Shedrak
the operation * is x * y =x + y/ 1+(x × y) show if the operation is commutative if x × y is not equal to -1
Alfred Reply
An investment account was opened with an initial deposit of $9,600 and earns 7.4% interest, compounded continuously. How much will the account be worth after 15 years?
Kala Reply
lim x to infinity e^1-e^-1/log(1+x)
given eccentricity and a point find the equiation
Moses Reply
12, 17, 22.... 25th term
Alexandra Reply
12, 17, 22.... 25th term
Akash
College algebra is really hard?
Shirleen Reply
Absolutely, for me. My problems with math started in First grade...involving a nun Sister Anastasia, bad vision, talking & getting expelled from Catholic school. When it comes to math I just can't focus and all I can hear is our family silverware banging and clanging on the pink Formica table.
Carole
I'm 13 and I understand it great
AJ
I am 1 year old but I can do it! 1+1=2 proof very hard for me though.
Atone
Not really they are just easy concepts which can be understood if you have great basics. I am 14 I understood them easily.
Vedant
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Solomon
find the 15th term of the geometric sequince whose first is 18 and last term of 387
Jerwin Reply
I know this work
salma
Practice Key Terms 4

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Source:  OpenStax, College algebra. OpenStax CNX. Feb 06, 2015 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11759/1.3
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