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Solving Radical Equations - Concept

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

Adding and subtracting rational expressions is similar to adding fractions. When adding and subtracting rational expressions, we find a common denominator and then add the numerators. To find a common denominator, factor each first. This strategy is especially important when the denominators are trinomials.

You guys are going to be working on solving radical equations. What that means is that you're going to have a square root and an equal sign. So I'm just going to tell you just one sentence that's going to help you know how to do these.
What you need to do is isolate the square root sign and then square both sides of the equals. If you can remember that, and if that makes sense in your head, you'll be able to do these really well. Let me tell you one more time. What you need to do is undo or isolate anything that's, you're going to isolate the square root by undoing anything that was happening to it like if it was being multiplied by something or divided by something, or adding subtracting whatever. Isolate the square root sign and then square both sides of the equals. From there you solve for x. It sounds pretty easy, you'll see your teacher is going to throw us some tricks at you. You can do it. Just make sure you're being really careful with isolating the square root before you square both sides of the equation.

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