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Factoring Trinomials, a = 1 - Problem 7

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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

Factoring is a process of turning a sum or difference into a product. If the first term of the trinomial is x squared, then we know that the first terms in each factor must be x. If the "c" term of the trinomial is positive and "b" is negative, like in these examples, then we know our remaining terms must both be negative. We look for integers that multiply to the "c" term and add to the "b" term, being careful with the positive and negative sign placement. Sometimes it is useful to make a table of possible factors, which we demonstrate here.

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