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

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The Ellipse - Problem 8

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

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If an ellipse is centered at the origin, we need to determine whether the major axis is vertical (meaning the y^2 term will be over a^2,) or horizontal (meaning x^2 will be over a^2.) In this particular example, the given focus is on the y-axis, which tells us that there is a vertical major axis. The y-intercept represents a point on the ellipse, which tells us the "a" value. Using the relation a^2 - b^2 = c^2, we solve for b^2 to find the last information needed to write the standard form equation.

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