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Key equations

Rational Function f ( x ) = P ( x ) Q ( x ) = a p x p + a p 1 x p 1 + ... + a 1 x + a 0 b q x q + b q 1 x q 1 + ... + b 1 x + b 0 ,   Q ( x ) 0

Key concepts

  • We can use arrow notation to describe local behavior and end behavior of the toolkit functions f ( x ) = 1 x and f ( x ) = 1 x 2 . See [link] .
  • A function that levels off at a horizontal value has a horizontal asymptote. A function can have more than one vertical asymptote. See [link] .
  • Application problems involving rates and concentrations often involve rational functions. See [link] .
  • The domain of a rational function includes all real numbers except those that cause the denominator to equal zero. See [link] .
  • The vertical asymptotes of a rational function will occur where the denominator of the function is equal to zero and the numerator is not zero. See [link] .
  • A removable discontinuity might occur in the graph of a rational function if an input causes both numerator and denominator to be zero. See [link] .
  • A rational function’s end behavior will mirror that of the ratio of the leading terms of the numerator and denominator functions. See [link] , [link] , [link] , and [link] .
  • Graph rational functions by finding the intercepts, behavior at the intercepts and asymptotes, and end behavior. See [link] .
  • If a rational function has x -intercepts at x = x 1 , x 2 , , x n , vertical asymptotes at x = v 1 , v 2 , , v m , and no x i = any  v j , then the function can be written in the form
    f ( x ) = a ( x x 1 ) p 1 ( x x 2 ) p 2 ( x x n ) p n ( x v 1 ) q 1 ( x v 2 ) q 2 ( x v m ) q n

    See [link] .

Section exercises

Verbal

What is the fundamental difference in the algebraic representation of a polynomial function and a rational function?

The rational function will be represented by a quotient of polynomial functions.

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What is the fundamental difference in the graphs of polynomial functions and rational functions?

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If the graph of a rational function has a removable discontinuity, what must be true of the functional rule?

The numerator and denominator must have a common factor.

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Can a graph of a rational function have no vertical asymptote? If so, how?

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Can a graph of a rational function have no x -intercepts? If so, how?

Yes. The numerator of the formula of the functions would have only complex roots and/or factors common to both the numerator and denominator.

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Algebraic

For the following exercises, find the domain of the rational functions.

f ( x ) = x + 1 x 2 1

All reals  x 1 ,   1

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f ( x ) = x 2 + 4 x 2 2 x 8

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f ( x ) = x 2 + 4 x 3 x 4 5 x 2 + 4

All reals  x 1 ,   2 ,   1 ,   2

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For the following exercises, find the domain, vertical asymptotes, and horizontal asymptotes of the functions.

f ( x ) = 2 5 x + 2

V.A. at x = 2 5 ; H.A. at y = 0 ; Domain is all reals x 2 5

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f ( x ) = x x 2 + 5 x 36

V.A. at x = 4 ,   9 ; H.A. at y = 0 ; Domain is all reals x 4 ,   9

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f ( x ) = 3 + x x 3 27

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f ( x ) = 3 x 4 x 3 16 x

V.A. at x = 0 ,   4 ,   4 ; H.A. at y = 0 ; Domain is all reals x 0 , 4 ,   4

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f ( x ) = x 2 1 x 3 + 9 x 2 + 14 x

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f ( x ) = x + 5 x 2 25

V.A. at x = 5 ; H.A. at y = 0 ; Domain is all reals x 5 , 5

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f ( x ) = x 4 x 6

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f ( x ) = 4 2 x 3 x 1

V.A. at x = 1 3 ; H.A. at y = 2 3 ; Domain is all reals x 1 3 .

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For the following exercises, find the x - and y -intercepts for the functions.

f ( x ) = x x 2 x

none

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f ( x ) = x 2 + 8 x + 7 x 2 + 11 x + 30

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f ( x ) = x 2 + x + 6 x 2 10 x + 24

x -intercepts none,  y -intercept  ( 0 , 1 4 )

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f ( x ) = 94 2 x 2 3 x 2 12

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For the following exercises, describe the local and end behavior of the functions.

Questions & Answers

a colony of bacteria is growing exponentially doubling in size every 100 minutes. how much minutes will it take for the colony of bacteria to triple in size
Divya Reply
what is the importance knowing the graph of circular functions?
Arabella Reply
can get some help basic precalculus
ismail Reply
What do you need help with?
Andrew
how to convert general to standard form with not perfect trinomial
Camalia Reply
can get some help inverse function
ismail
Rectangle coordinate
Asma Reply
how to find for x
Jhon Reply
it depends on the equation
Robert
whats a domain
mike Reply
The domain of a function is the set of all input on which the function is defined. For example all real numbers are the Domain of any Polynomial function.
Spiro
foci (–7,–17) and (–7,17), the absolute value of the differenceof the distances of any point from the foci is 24.
Churlene Reply
difference between calculus and pre calculus?
Asma Reply
give me an example of a problem so that I can practice answering
Jenefa Reply
x³+y³+z³=42
Robert
dont forget the cube in each variable ;)
Robert
of she solves that, well ... then she has a lot of computational force under her command ....
Walter
what is a function?
CJ Reply
I want to learn about the law of exponent
Quera Reply
explain this
Hinderson Reply
what is functions?
Angel Reply
A mathematical relation such that every input has only one out.
Spiro
yes..it is a relationo of orders pairs of sets one or more input that leads to a exactly one output.
Mubita
Is a rule that assigns to each element X in a set A exactly one element, called F(x), in a set B.
RichieRich
If the plane intersects the cone (either above or below) horizontally, what figure will be created?
Feemark Reply
Practice Key Terms 5

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Source:  OpenStax, Precalculus. OpenStax CNX. Jan 19, 2016 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11667/1.6
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