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The Hyperbola - Problem 4

Teacher/Instructor Alissa Fong
Alissa Fong

MA, Stanford University
Teaching in the San Francisco Bay Area

Alissa is currently a teacher in the San Francisco Bay Area and Brightstorm users love her clear, concise explanations of tough concepts

If the center of a hyperbola is at the origin, we can find the distance from the origin (center) to the focus, which is called "c," to locate the focus. "c" will be found using the relationship a^2 + b^2 = c^2, where a^2 is the denominator of the first fraction and b^2 is the denominator of the second fraction. If the first fraction has x^2, then the hyperbola would open along a horizontal axis, so the distance "c" would be added the the x-coordinate of the center. If y^2 is in the first fraction, then the hyperbola opens vertically, and "c" will be added to the y-coordinate of the center.

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