### What is a Linear Function?

Linear functions are algebraic equations whose graphs are straight lines with unique values for their slope and y-intercepts.

### Learning Objectives

Describe the parts and characteristics of a linear function

### Key Takeaways

#### Key Points

- A linear function is an algebraic equation in which each term is either a constant or the product of a constant and (the first power of) a single variable.
- A function is a relation with the property that each input is related to exactly one output.
- A relation is a set of ordered pairs.
- The graph of a linear function is a straight line, but a vertical line is not the graph of a function.
- All linear functions are written as equations and are characterized by their slope and [latex]y[/latex]-intercept.

#### Key Terms

**relation**: A collection of ordered pairs.**variable**: A symbol that represents a quantity in a mathematical expression, as used in many sciences.**linear function**: An algebraic equation in which each term is either a constant or the product of a constant and (the first power of) a single variable.**function**: A relation between a set of inputs and a set of permissible outputs with the property that each input is related to exactly one output.

#### What is a Linear Function?

A linear function is an algebraic equation in which each term is either a constant or the product of a constant and (the first power of) a single variable. For example, a common equation, [latex]y=mx+b[/latex], (namely the slope-intercept form, which we will learn more about later) is a linear function because it meets both criteria with [latex]x[/latex] and [latex]y[/latex] as variables and [latex]m[/latex] and [latex]b[/latex] as constants. It is linear: the exponent of the [latex]x[/latex] term is a one (first power), and it follows the definition of a function: for each input ([latex]x[/latex]) there is exactly one output ([latex]y[/latex]). Also, its graph is a straight line.

### Graphs of Linear Functions

The origin of the name &#;linear&#; comes from the fact that the set of solutions of such an equation forms a straight line in the plane. In the linear function graphs below, the constant, [latex]m[/latex], determines the slope or gradient of that line, and the constant term, [latex]b[/latex], determines the point at which the line crosses the [latex]y[/latex]-axis, otherwise known as the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept.

**Graphs of linear functions:** The blue line, [latex]y=\frac{1}{2}x-3[/latex] and the red line, [latex]y=-x+5[/latex] are both linear functions. The blue line has a positive slope of [latex]\frac{1}{2}[/latex] and a [latex]y[/latex]-intercept of [latex]-3[/latex]; the red line has a negative slope of [latex]-1[/latex] and a [latex]y[/latex]-intercept of [latex]5[/latex].

### Vertical and Horizontal Lines

Vertical lines have an undefined slope, and cannot be represented in the form [latex]y=mx+b[/latex], but instead as an equation of the form [latex]x=c[/latex] for a constant [latex]c[/latex], because the vertical line intersects a value on the [latex]x[/latex]-axis, [latex]c[/latex]. For example, the graph of the equation [latex]x=4[/latex] includes the same input value of [latex]4[/latex] for all points on the line, but would have different output values, such as [latex](4,-2),(4,0),(4,1),(4,5),[/latex] etcetera. Vertical lines are NOT functions, however, since each input is related to more than one output.

Horizontal lines have a slope of zero and is represented by the form, [latex]y=b[/latex], where [latex]b[/latex] is the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept. A graph of the equation [latex]y=6[/latex] includes the same output value of 6 for all input values on the line, such as [latex](-2,6),(0,6),(2,6),(6,6)[/latex], etcetera. Horizontal lines ARE functions because the relation (set of points) has the characteristic that each input is related to exactly one output.

### Slope

Slope describes the direction and steepness of a line, and can be calculated given two points on the line.

### Learning Objectives

Calculate the slope of a line using &#;rise over run&#; and identify the role of slope in a linear equation

### Key Takeaways

#### Key Points

- The slope of a line is a number that describes both the direction and the steepness of the line; its sign indicates the direction, while its magnitude indicates the steepness.
- The ratio of the rise to the run is the slope of a line, [latex]m = \frac{rise}{run}[/latex].
- The slope of a line can be calculated with the formula [latex]m = \frac{y_{2} - y_{1}}{x_{2} - x_{1}}[/latex], where [latex](x_1, y_1)[/latex] and [latex](x_2, y_2)[/latex] are points on the line.

#### Key Terms

**steepness**: The rate at which a function is deviating from a reference.**direction**: Increasing, decreasing, horizontal or vertical.

### Slope

In mathematics, the slope of a line is a number that describes both the *direction* and the *steepness* of the line. Slope is often denoted by the letter [latex]m[/latex]. Recall the slop-intercept form of a line, [latex]y = mx + b[/latex]. Putting the equation of a line into this form gives you the slope ([latex]m[/latex]) of a line, and its [latex]y[/latex]-intercept ([latex]b[/latex]). We will now discuss the interpretation of [latex]m[/latex], and how to calculate [latex]m[/latex] for a given line.

The direction of a line is either increasing, decreasing, horizontal or vertical. A line is increasing if it goes up from left to right which implies that the slope is positive ([latex]m > 0[/latex]). A line is decreasing if it goes down from left to right and the slope is negative ([latex]m < 0[/latex]). If a line is horizontal the slope is zero and is a constant function ([latex]y=c[/latex]). If a line is vertical the slope is undefined.

Slopes of Lines: The slope of a line can be positive, negative, zero, or undefined.

The steepness, or incline, of a line is measured by the absolute value of the slope. A slope with a greater absolute value indicates a steeper line. In other words, a line with a slope of [latex]-9[/latex] is steeper than a line with a slope of [latex]7[/latex].

### Calculating Slope

Slope is calculated by finding the ratio of the &#;vertical change&#; to the &#;horizontal change&#; between any two distinct points on a line. This ratio is represented by a quotient (&#;rise over run&#;), and gives the same number for any two distinct points on the same line. It is represented by [latex]m = \frac{rise}{run}[/latex].[latex][/latex]

Visualization of Slope: The slope of a line is calculated as &#;rise over run.&#;

Mathematically, the slope *m* of the line is:

[latex]\displaystyle m = \frac{y_{2} - y_{1}}{x_{2} - x_{1}}[/latex]

Two points on the line are required to find [latex]m[/latex]. Given two points [latex](x_1, y_1)[/latex] and [latex](x_2, y_2)[/latex], take a look at the graph below and note how the &#;rise&#; of slope is given by the difference in the [latex]y[/latex]-values of the two points, and the &#;run&#; is given by the difference in the [latex]x[/latex]-values.

**Slope Represented Graphically:** The slope [latex]m =\frac{y_{2} &#; y_{1}}{x_{2} &#; x_{1}}[/latex] is calculated from the two points [latex]\left( x_1,y_1 \right)[/latex] and [latex]\left( x_2,y_2 \right)[/latex].

Now we’ll look at some graphs on a coordinate grid to find their slopes. In many cases, we can find slope by simply counting out the rise and the run. We start by locating two points on the line. If possible, we try to choose points with coordinates that are integers to make our calculations easier.

### Example

Find the slope of the line shown on the coordinate plane below.

**Find the slope of the line:** Notice the line is increasing so make sure to look for a slope that is positive.

Locate two points on the graph, choosing points whose coordinates are integers. We will use [latex](0, -3)[/latex] and [latex](5, 1)[/latex]. Starting with the point on the left, [latex](0, -3)[/latex], sketch a right triangle, going from the first point to the second point, [latex](5, 1)[/latex].

Identify points on the line: Draw a triangle to help identify the rise and run.

Count the rise on the vertical leg of the triangle: [latex]4[/latex] units.

Count the run on the horizontal leg of the triangle: [latex]5[/latex] units.

Use the slope formula to take the ratio of rise over run:

[latex]\displaystyle \begin{align} m &= \frac{rise}{run} \\ &= \frac{4}{5} \end{align}[/latex]

The slope of the line is [latex]\frac{4}{5}[/latex]. Notice that the slope is positive since the line slants upward from left to right.

### Example

Find the slope of the line shown on the coordinate plane below.

Find the slope of the line: We can see the slope is decreasing, so be sure to look for a negative slope.

Locate two points on the graph. Look for points with coordinates that are integers. We can choose any points, but we will use [latex](0, 5)[/latex] and [latex](3, 3)[/latex].

**Identify two points on the line:** The points [latex](0, 5)[/latex] and [latex](3, 3)[/latex] are on the line.

[latex]\displaystyle m =\frac{y_{2} - y_{1}}{x_{2} - x_{1}}[/latex]

Let [latex](x_1, y_1)[/latex] be the point [latex](0, 5)[/latex], and [latex](x_2, y_2)[/latex] be the point [latex](3, 3)[/latex].

Plugging the corresponding values into the slope formula, we get:

[latex]\displaystyle \begin{align} m &= \frac{}{} \\ &= \frac{-2}{3} \end{align}[/latex]

The slope of the line is [latex]- \frac{2}{3}[/latex]. Notice that the slope is negative since the line slants downward from left to right.

### Direct and Inverse Variation

Two variables in direct variation have a linear relationship, while variables in inverse variation do not.

### Learning Objectives

Recognize examples of functions that vary directly and inversely

### Key Takeaways

#### Key Points

- Two variables that change proportionally to one another are said to be in direct variation.
- The relationship between two directly proportionate variable can be represented by a linear equation in slope -intercept form, and is easily modeled using a linear graph.
- Inverse variation is the opposite of direct variation; two variables are said to be inversely proportional when a change is performed on one variable and the opposite happens to the

other. - The relationship between two inversely proportionate variables cannot be represented by a linear equation, and its graphical representation is not a line, but a hyperbola.

#### Key Terms

**hyperbola**: A conic section formed by the intersection of a cone with a plane that intersects the base of the cone and is not tangent to the cone.**proportional**: At a constant ratio. Two magnitudes (numbers) are said to be proportional if the second varies in a direct relation arithmetically to the first.

### Direct Variation

Simply put, two variables are in direct variation when the same thing that happens to one variable happens to the other. If [latex]x[/latex] and [latex]y[/latex] are in direct variation, and [latex]x[/latex] is doubled, then [latex]y[/latex] would also be doubled. The two variables may be considered directly proportional.

For example, a toothbrush costs [latex]2[/latex] dollars. Purchasing [latex]5[/latex] toothbrushes would cost [latex]10[/latex] dollars, and purchasing [latex]10[/latex] toothbrushes would [latex]20[/latex] cost dollars. Thus we can say that the cost varies directly as the value of toothbrushes.

Direct variation is represented by a linear equation, and can be modeled by graphing a line. Since we know that the relationship between two values is constant, we can give their relationship with:

[latex]\displaystyle \frac{y}{x} = k[/latex]

Where [latex]k[/latex] is a constant.

Rewriting this equation by multiplying both sides by [latex]x[/latex] yields:

[latex]\displaystyle y = kx[/latex]

Notice that this is a linear equation in slope-intercept form, where the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept [latex]b[/latex] is equal to [latex]0[/latex].

Thus, any line passing through the origin represents a direct variation between [latex]x[/latex] and [latex]y[/latex]:

Directly Proportional Variables: The graph of [latex]y = kx[/latex] demonstrates an example of direct variation between two variables.

Revisiting the example with toothbrushes and dollars, we can define the [latex]x[/latex]-axis as number of toothbrushes and the [latex]y[/latex]-axis as number of dollars. Doing so, the variables would abide by the relationship:

[latex]\displaystyle \frac{y}{x} = 2[/latex]

Any augmentation of one variable would lead to an equal augmentation of the other. For example, doubling [latex]y[/latex] would result in the doubling of [latex]x[/latex].

### Inverse Variation

Inverse variation is the opposite of direct variation. In the case of inverse variation, the increase of one variable leads to the decrease of another. In fact, two variables are said to be inversely proportional when an operation of change is performed on one variable and the opposite happens to the other. For example, if [latex]x[/latex] and [latex]y[/latex] are inversely proportional, if [latex]x[/latex] is doubled, then [latex]y[/latex] is halved.

As an example, the time taken for a journey is inversely proportional to the speed of travel. If your car travels at a greater speed, the journey to your destination will be shorter.

Knowing that the relationship between the two variables is constant, we can show that their relationship is:

[latex]\displaystyle yx = k[/latex]

Where [latex]k[/latex] is a constant known as the constant of proportionality. Note that as long as [latex]k[/latex] is not equal to [latex]0[/latex], neither [latex]x[/latex] nor [latex]y[/latex] can ever equal [latex]0[/latex] either. We can rearrange the above equation to place the variables on opposite sides:

[latex]\displaystyle y=\frac{k}{x}[/latex]

Notice that this is not a linear equation. It is impossible to put it in slope-intercept form. Thus, an inverse relationship cannot be represented by a line with constant slope. Inverse variation can be illustrated with a graph in the shape of a hyperbola, pictured below.

**Inversely Proportional Function:** An inversely proportional relationship between two variables is represented graphically by a hyperbola.

### Zeroes of Linear Functions

A zero, or [latex]x[/latex]-intercept, is the point at which a linear function&#;s value will equal zero.

### Learning Objectives

Practice finding the zeros of linear functions

### Key Takeaways

#### Key Points

- A zero is a point at which a function &#;s value will be equal to zero. Its coordinates are [latex](x,0)[/latex], where [latex]x[/latex] is equal to the zero of the graph.
- Zeros can be observed graphically or solved for algebraically.
- A linear function can have none, one, or infinitely many zeros. If the function is a horizontal line ( slope = [latex]0[/latex]), it will have no zeros unless its equation is [latex]y=0[/latex], in which case it will have infinitely many. If the line is non-horizontal, it will have one zero.

#### Key Terms

**zero**: Also known as a root; an [latex]x[/latex] value at which the function of [latex]x[/latex] is equal to [latex]0[/latex].**linear function**: An algebraic equation in which each term is either a constant or the product of a constant and (the first power of) a single variable.**y-intercept**: A point at which a line crosses the [latex]y[/latex]-axis of a Cartesian grid.

The graph of a linear function is a straight line. Graphically, where the line crosses the [latex]x[/latex]-axis, is called a zero, or root. Algebraically, a zero is an [latex]x[/latex] value at which the function of [latex]x[/latex] is equal to [latex]0[/latex]. Linear functions can have none, one, or infinitely many zeros. If there is a horizontal line through any point on the [latex]y[/latex]-axis, other than at zero, there are no zeros, since the line will never cross the [latex]x[/latex]-axis. If the horizontal line overlaps the [latex]x[/latex]-axis, (goes through the [latex]y[/latex]-axis at zero) then there are infinitely many zeros, since the line intersects the [latex]x[/latex]-axis multiple times. Finally, if the line is vertical or has a slope, then there will be only one zero.

### Finding the Zeros of Linear Functions Graphically

Zeros can be observed graphically. An [latex]x[/latex]-intercept, or zero, is a property of many functions. Because the [latex]x[/latex]-intercept (zero) is a point at which the function crosses the [latex]x[/latex]-axis, it will have the value [latex](x,0)[/latex], where [latex]x[/latex] is the zero.

All lines, with a value for the slope, will have one zero. To find the zero of a linear function, simply find the point where the line crosses the [latex]x[/latex]-axis.

Zeros of linear functions: The blue line, [latex]y=\frac{1}{2}x+2[/latex], has a zero at [latex](-4,0)[/latex]; the red line, [latex]y=-x+5[/latex], has a zero at [latex](5,0)[/latex]. Since each line has a value for the slope, each line has exactly one zero.

### Finding the Zeros of Linear Functions Algebraically

To find the zero of a linear function algebraically, set [latex]y=0[/latex] and solve for [latex]x[/latex].

The zero from solving the linear function above graphically must match solving the same function algebraically.

### Example: Find the zero of [latex]y=\frac{1}{2}x+2[/latex] algebraically

First, substitute [latex]0[/latex] for [latex]y[/latex]:

[latex]\displaystyle 0=\frac{1}{2}x+2[/latex]

Next, solve for [latex]x[/latex]. Subtract [latex]2[/latex] and then multiply by [latex]2[/latex], to obtain:

[latex]\displaystyle \begin{align} \frac{1}{2}x&=-2\\ x&=-4 \end{align}[/latex]

The zero is [latex](-4,0)[/latex]. This is the same zero that was found using the graphing method.

### Slope-Intercept Equations

The slope-intercept form of a line summarizes the information necessary to quickly construct its graph.

### Learning Objectives

Convert linear equations to slope-intercept form and explain why it is useful

### Key Takeaways

#### Key Points

- The slope -intercept form of a line is given by [latex]y = mx + b[/latex] where [latex]m[/latex] is the slope of the line and [latex]b[/latex] is the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept.
- The constant [latex]b[/latex] is known as the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept. From slope- intercept form, when [latex]x=0[/latex], [latex]y=b[/latex], and the point [latex](0,b)[/latex] is the unique point on the line also on the [latex]y[/latex]-axis.
- To graph a line in slope-intercept form, first plot the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept, then use the value of the slope to locate a second point on the line. If the value of the slope is an integer, use a [latex]1[/latex] for the denominator.
- Use algebra to solve for [latex]y[/latex] if the equation is not written in slope-intercept form. Only then can the value of the slope and [latex]y[/latex]-intercept be located from the equation accurately.

#### Key Terms

**slope**: The ratio of the vertical and horizontal distances between two points on a line; zero if the line is horizontal, undefined if it is vertical.**y-intercept**: A point at which a line crosses the [latex]y[/latex]-axis of a Cartesian grid.

### Slope-Intercept Form

One of the most common representations for a line is with the slope-intercept form. Such an equation is given by [latex]y=mx+b[/latex], where [latex]x[/latex] and [latex]y[/latex] are variables and [latex]m[/latex] and [latex]b[/latex] are constants. When written in this form, the constant [latex]m[/latex] is the value of the slope and [latex]b[/latex] is the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept. Note that if [latex]m[/latex] is [latex]0[/latex], then [latex]y=b[/latex] represents a horizontal line. Note that this equation does not allow for vertical lines, since that would require that [latex]m[/latex] be infinite (undefined). However, a vertical line is defined by the equation [latex]x=c[/latex] for some constant [latex]c[/latex].

### Converting an Equation to Slope-Intercept Form

Writing an equation in slope-intercept form is valuable since from the form it is easy to identify the slope and [latex]y[/latex]-intercept. This assists in finding solutions to various problems, such as graphing, comparing two lines to determine if they are parallel or perpendicular and solving a system of equations.

### Example

Let&#;s write an equation in slope-intercept form with [latex]m=-\frac{2}{3}[/latex], and [latex]b=3[/latex]. Simply substitute the values into the slope-intercept form to obtain:

[latex]\displaystyle y=-\frac{2}{3}x+3[/latex]

If an equation is not in slope-intercept form, solve for [latex]y[/latex] and rewrite the equation.

### Example

Let&#;s write the equation [latex]3x+2y=-4[/latex] in slope-intercept form and identify the slope and [latex]y[/latex]-intercept. To solve the equation for [latex]y[/latex], first subtract [latex]3x[/latex] from both sides of the equation to get:

[latex]\displaystyle 2y=-3x-4[/latex]

Then divide both sides of the equation by [latex]2[/latex] to obtain:

[latex]\displaystyle y=\frac{1}{2}(-3x-4)[/latex]

Which simplifies to [latex]y=-\frac{3}{2}x-2[/latex]. Now that the equation is in slope-intercept form, we see that the slope [latex]m=-\frac{3}{2}[/latex], and the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept [latex]b=-2[/latex].

### Graphing an Equation in Slope-Intercept Form

We begin by constructing the graph of the equation in the previous example.

### Example

We construct the graph the line [latex]y=-\frac{3}{2}x-2[/latex] using the slope-intercept method. We begin by plotting the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept [latex]b=-2[/latex], whose coordinates are [latex](0,-2)[/latex]. The value of the slope dictates where to place the next point.

Since the value of the slope is [latex]\frac{-3}{2}[/latex], the rise is [latex]-3[/latex] and the run is [latex]2[/latex]. This means that from the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept, [latex](0,-2)[/latex], move [latex]3[/latex] units down, and move [latex]2[/latex] units right. Thus we arrive at the point [latex](2,-5)[/latex] on the line. If the negative sign is placed with the denominator instead the slope would be written as [latex]\frac{3}{-2}[/latex], we can instead move up [latex]3[/latex] units and left [latex]2[/latex] units from the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept to arrive at the point [latex](-2,1)[/latex], also on the line.

Slope-intercept graph: Graph of the line [latex]y=-\frac{3}{2}x-2[/latex].

### Example

Let&#;s graph the equation [latex]12x-6y-6=0[/latex]. First we solve the equation for [latex]y[/latex] by subtracting [latex]12x[/latex] to obtain:

[latex]\displaystyle -6y-6=x[/latex]

Next, add [latex]6[/latex] to get:

[latex]\displaystyle -6y=x+6[/latex]

Finally, divide all terms by [latex]-6[/latex] to get the slope-intercept form:

[latex]\displaystyle y=2x-1[/latex]

The slope is [latex]2[/latex], and the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept is [latex]-1[/latex]. Using this information, graphing is easy. Start by plotting the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept [latex](0,-1)[/latex], then use the value of the slope, [latex]\frac{2}{1}[/latex], to move up [latex]2[/latex] units and right [latex]1[/latex] unit.

**Slope-intercept graph:** Graph of the line [latex]y=2x-1[/latex].

### Point-Slope Equations

The point-slope equation is another way to represent a line; only the slope and a single point are needed.

### Learning Objectives

Use point-slope form to find the equation of a line passing through two points and verify that it is equivalent to the slope-intercept form of the equation

### Key Takeaways

#### Key Points

- The point &#; slope equation is given by [latex]y-y_{1}=m(x-x_{1})[/latex], where [latex](x_{1}, y_{1})[/latex] is any point on the line, and [latex]m[/latex] is the slope of the line.
- The point-slope equation requires that there is at least one point and the slope. If there are two points and no slope, the slope can be calculated from the two points first and then choose one of the two points to write the equation.
- The point-slope equation and slope-intercept equations are equivalent. It can be shown that given a point [latex](x_{1}, y_{1})[/latex] and slope [latex]m[/latex], the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept ([latex]b[/latex]) in the slope-intercept equation is [latex]y_{1}-mx_{1}[/latex].

#### Key Terms

**point-slope equation**: An equation of a line given a point [latex](x_{1}, y_{1})[/latex] and a slope [latex]m[/latex]: [latex] y-y_{1}=m(x-x_{1})[/latex].

### Point-Slope Equation

The point-slope equation is a way of describing the equation of a line. The point-slope form is ideal if you are given the slope and only one point, or if you are given two points and do not know what the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept is. Given a slope, [latex]m[/latex], and a point [latex](x_{1}, y_{1})[/latex], the point-slope equation is:

[latex]\displaystyle y-y_{1}=m(x-x_{1})[/latex]

### Verify Point-Slope Form is Equivalent to Slope-Intercept Form

To show that these two equations are equivalent, choose a generic point [latex](x_{1}, y_{1})[/latex]. Plug in the generic point into the equation [latex]y=mx+b[/latex]. The equation is now, [latex]y_{1}=mx_{1}+b[/latex], giving us the ordered pair,[latex](x_{1}, mx_{1}+b)[/latex]. Then plug this point into the point-slope equation and solve for [latex]y[/latex] to get:

[latex]\displaystyle y-(mx_{1}+b)=m(x-x_{1})[/latex]

Distribute the negative sign through and distribute [latex]m[/latex] through [latex](x-x_{1})[/latex]:

[latex]\displaystyle y-mx_{1}-b=mx-mx_{1}[/latex]

Add [latex]mx_{1}[/latex] to both sides:

[latex]\displaystyle y-mx_{1}+mx_{1}-b=mx-mx_{1}+mx_{1}[/latex]

Combine like terms:

[latex]\displaystyle y-b=mx[/latex]

Add [latex]b[/latex] to both sides:

[latex]\displaystyle y-b+b=mx+b[/latex]

Combine like terms:

[latex]\displaystyle y=mx+b[/latex]

Therefore, the two equations are equivalent and either one can express an equation of a line depending on what information is given in the problem or what type of equation is requested in the problem.

### Example: Write the equation of a line in point-slope form, given a point [latex](2,1)[/latex] and slope [latex]-4[/latex], and convert to slope-intercept form

Write the equation of the line in point-slope form:

[latex]\displaystyle y-1=-4(x-2)[/latex]

To switch this equation into slope-intercept form, solve the equation for [latex]y[/latex]:

[latex]\displaystyle y-1=-4(x-2)[/latex]

Distribute [latex]-4[/latex]:

[latex]\displaystyle y-1=-4x+8[/latex]

Add [latex]1[/latex] to both sides:

[latex]\displaystyle y=-4x+9[/latex]

The equation has the same meaning whichever form it is in, and produces the same graph.

Line graph: Graph of the line [latex]y-1=-4(x-2)[/latex], through the point [latex](2,1)[/latex] with slope of [latex]-4[/latex], as well as the slope-intercept form, [latex]y=-4x+9[/latex].

### Example: Write the equation of a line in point-slope form, given point [latex](-3,6)[/latex] and point [latex](1,2)[/latex], and convert to slope-intercept form

Since we have two points, but no slope, we must first find the slope:

[latex]\displaystyle m=\frac{y_{2}-y_{1}}{x_{2}-x_{1}}[/latex]

Substituting the values of the points:

[latex]\displaystyle \begin{align} m&=\frac{}{1-(-3)}\\&=\frac{-8}{4}\\&=-2 \end{align}[/latex]

Now choose either of the two points, such as [latex](-3,6)[/latex]. Plug this point and the calculated slope into the point-slope equation to get:

[latex]\displaystyle y-6=-2[x-(-3)][/latex]

Be careful if one of the coordinates is a negative. Distributing the negative sign through the parentheses, the final equation is:

[latex]\displaystyle y-6=-2(x+3)[/latex]

If you chose the other point, the equation would be: [latex]y+2=-2(x-1)[/latex] and either answer is correct.

Next distribute [latex]-2[/latex]:

[latex]\displaystyle y-6=-2x-6[/latex]

Add [latex]6[/latex] to both sides:

[latex]\displaystyle y=-2x[/latex]

Again, the two forms of the equations are equivalent to each other and produce the same line. The only difference is the form that they are written in.

### Linear Equations in Standard Form

A linear equation written in standard form makes it easy to calculate the zero, or [latex]x[/latex]-intercept, of the equation.

### Learning Objectives

Explain the process and usefulness of converting linear equations to standard form

### Key Takeaways

#### Key Points

- The standard form of a linear equation is written as: [latex]Ax + By = C [/latex].
- The standard form is useful in calculating the zero of an equation. For a linear equation in standard form, if [latex]A[/latex] is nonzero, then the [latex]x[/latex]-intercept occurs at [latex]x = \frac{C}{A}[/latex].

#### Key Terms

**zero**: Also known as a root, a zero is an [latex]x[/latex]-value at which the function of [latex]x[/latex] is equal to 0.**slope-intercept form**: A linear equation written in the form [latex]y = mx + b[/latex].**y-intercept**: A point at which a line crosses the y-axis of a Cartesian grid.

### Standard Form

Standard form is another way of arranging a linear equation. In the standard form, a linear equation is written as:

[latex]\displaystyle Ax + By = C [/latex]

where [latex]A[/latex] and [latex]B[/latex] are both not equal to zero. The equation is usually written so that [latex]A \geq 0[/latex], by convention. The graph of the equation is a straight line, and every straight line can be represented by an equation in the standard form.

For example, consider an equation in slope -intercept form: [latex]y = x +5[/latex]. In order to write this in standard form, note that we must move the term containing [latex]x[/latex] to the left side of the equation. We add [latex]12x[/latex] to both sides:

[latex]\displaystyle y + 12x = 5[/latex]

The equation is now in standard form.

### Using Standard Form to Find Zeroes

Recall that a zero is a point at which a function &#;s value will be equal to zero ([latex]y=0[/latex]), and is the [latex]x[/latex]-intercept of the function. We know that the *y*-intercept of a linear equation can easily be found by putting the equation in slope-intercept form. However, the zero of the equation is not immediately obvious when the linear equation is in this form. However, the zero, or [latex]x[/latex]-intercept of a linear equation can easily be found by putting it into standard form.

For a linear equation in standard form, if [latex]A[/latex] is nonzero, then the [latex]x[/latex]-intercept occurs at [latex]x = \frac{C}{A}[/latex].

For example, consider the equation [latex]y + 12x = 5[/latex].

In this equation, the value of [latex]A[/latex] is 1, and the value of [latex]C[/latex] is 5. Therefore, the zero of the equation occurs at [latex]x = \frac{5}{1} = 5[/latex]. The zero is the point [latex](5, 0)[/latex].

Note that the [latex]y[/latex]-intercept and slope can also be calculated using the coefficients and constant of the standard form equation. If [latex]B[/latex] is non-zero, then the *y*-intercept, that is the *y*-coordinate of the point where the graph crosses the *y*-axis (where [latex]x[/latex] is zero), is [latex]\frac{C}{B}[/latex], and the slope of the line is [latex]-\frac{A}{B}[/latex].

### Example: Find the zero of the equation [latex]3(y - 2) = \frac{1}{4}x +3[/latex]

We must write the equation in standard form, [latex]Ax + By = C[/latex], which means getting the [latex]x[/latex] and [latex]y[/latex] terms on the left side, and the constants on the right side of the equation.

Distribute the 3 on the left side:

[latex]\displaystyle 3y - 6 = \frac{1}{4}x +3[/latex]

Add 6 to both sides:

[latex]\displaystyle 3y = \frac{1}{4}x + 9[/latex]

Subtract [latex]\frac{1}{4}x[/latex] from both sides:

[latex]\displaystyle 3y - \frac{1}{4}x = 9[/latex]

Rearrange to [latex]Ax + By = C[/latex]:

[latex]\displaystyle - \frac{1}{4}x+3y = 9[/latex]

The equation is in standard form, and we can substitute the values for [latex]A[/latex] and [latex]C[/latex] into the formula for the zero:

[latex]\displaystyle \begin{align} x &= \frac{C}{A} \\&= \frac{9}{-\frac{1}{4}} \\&= \end{align}[/latex]

The zero is [latex](, 0)[/latex].

## Writing Systems of Linear Equations from Word Problems

Some word problems require the use of systems of linear equations . Here are clues to know when a word problem requires you to write a system of linear equations:

(i) There are two different quantities involved: for instance, the number of adults and the number of children, the number of large boxes and the number of small boxes, etc.

(ii) There is a value associated with each quantity: for instance, the price of an adult ticket or a children's ticket, or the number of items in a large box as opposed to a small box.

Such problems often require you to write two different linear equations in two variables. Typically, one equation will relate the number of quantities (people or boxes) and the other equation will relate the values (price of tickets or number of items in the boxes).

Here are some steps to follow:

1. Understand the problem.

Understand all the words used in stating the problem.

Understand what you are asked to find.

Familiarize the problem situation.

2. Translate the problem to an equation.

Assign a variable (or variables) to represent the unknown.

Clearly state what the variable represents.

3. Carry out the plan and solve the problem.

Use substitution , elimination or graphing method to solve the problem.

** Example: **

The cost of admission to a popular music concert was for children and adults. The admission was for children and adults in another music concert. How much was the admission for each child and adult?

. Understand the problem:

The admission cost for children and adults was .

The admission cost for children and adults was .

. Translate the problem to an equation.

Let represent the admission cost for each child.

Let represent the admission cost for each adult.

The admission cost for children plus adults is equal to .

That is, .

The admission cost for 8 children plus 3 adults is equal to $

That is, .

. Carry out the plan and solve the problem.

Subtract the second equation from the first.

Substitute for in .

Therefore, the cost of admission for each child is and each adult is .

## How to Write Linear Equations

In this article, you learn how to write the equation of the lines by using their slope and one point or using two points on the line.

### Related Topics

### Step by step guide to writing linear equations

- The equation of a line in slope intercept form is: \(\color{blue}{y=mx+b}\)
- Identify the slope.
- Find the \(y\)–intercept. This can be done by substituting the slope and the coordinates of a point \((x, y)\) on the line.

### Writing Linear Equations &#; Example 1:

What is the equation of the line that passes through \((1, -2)\) and has a slope of \(6\)?

**Solution:**

The general slope-intercept form of the equation of a line is \(y=mx+b\), where \(m\) is the slope and \(b\) is the \(y\)-intercept.

By substitution of the given point and given slope, we have: \(-2=(1)(6)+b \)

So, \(b= =-8\), and the required equation is \(y=6x-8\).

### Writing Linear Equations &#; Example 2:

Write the equation of the line through \((1, 1)\) and \((-1, 3)\).

**Solution:**

Slop \(= \frac{y_{2}- y_{1}}{x_{2} &#; x_{1} }=\frac{3- 1}{ 1}=\frac{2}{-2}=-1 → m=-1\)

To find the value of \(b\), you can use either points. The answer will be the same: \(y=-x+b \)

\((1,1) →1=-1+b→b=2\)

\((-1,3)→3=-(-1)+b→b=2\)

The equation of the line is: \(y=-x+2\)

### Writing Linear Equations &#; Example 3:

What is the equation of the line that passes through \((2,–2)\) and has a slope of \(7\)?

**Solution:**

The general slope-intercept form of the equation of a line is \(y=mx+b\), where \(m\) is the slope and \(b\) is the \(y-\)intercept.

By substitution of the given point and given slope, we have: \(-2=(7)(2)+b \)

So, \(b= –=\ \), and the required equation is \(y=7x\).

### Writing Linear Equations &#; Example 4:

Write the equation of the line through \((2,1)\) and \((-1,4)\).

**Solution:**

Slop \(= \frac{y_{2}- y_{1}}{x_{2} &#; x_{1} }=\frac{4- 1}{ 2}=\frac{3}{-3}=\ -1 → m= \ -1\)

To find the value of \(b\), you can use either points. The answer will be the same: \(y= \ -x+b \)

\( (2,1) →1=-2+b→b=3\)

\( (-1,4)→4=-(-1)+b→b=3\)

The equation of the line is: \(y= \ -x+3\)

### Exercises for Writing Linear Equations

### Write the slope–intercept form of the equation of the line through the given points.

- \(\color{blue}{through: (– 4, – 2), (– 3, 5)}\)
- \(\color{blue}{through: (5, 4), (– 4, 3) }\)
- \(\color{blue}{through: (0, – 2), (– 5, 3) }\)
- \(\color{blue}{through: (– 1, 1), (– 2, 6) }\)
- \(\color{blue}{through: (0, 3), (– 4, – 1) }\)
- \(\color{blue}{through: (0, 2), (1, – 3) }\)

### Download Writing Linear Equations Worksheet

- \(\color{blue}{y = 7x + 26}\)
- \(\color{blue}{y = \frac{1}{9} x + \frac{31}{9}}\)
- \(\color{blue}{y = – x – 2}\)
- \(\color{blue}{y = &#; 5x – 4}\)
- \(\color{blue}{y = x + 3}\)
- \(\color{blue}{y = – 5x + 2}\)

### "How to Write Linear Equations" Tags

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### Summary: Forms of two-variable linear equations

### Video transcript

## Equations writing linear

## Linear Equations

A **linear** equation is an equation for a straight **line**

### These are all linear equations:

y = 2x + 1 | ||

5x = 6 + 3y | ||

y/2 = 3 − x |

Let us look more closely at one example:

### Example: **y = 2x + 1** is a linear equation:

The graph of **y = 2x+1** is a straight line

- When x increases, y increases
**twice as fast**, so we need 2x - When x is 0, y is already 1. So +1 is also needed
- And so: y = 2x + 1

Here are some example values:

x | y = 2x + 1 |
---|---|

-1 | y = 2 × (-1) + 1 = -1 |

0 | y = 2 × 0 + 1 = 1 |

1 | y = 2 × 1 + 1 = 3 |

2 | y = 2 × 2 + 1 = 5 |

Check for yourself that those points are part of the line above!

### Different Forms

There are many ways of writing linear equations, but they usually have **constants** (like "2" or "c") and must have simple **variables** (like "x" or "y").

### Examples: These are linear equations:

**But** the variables (like "x" or "y") in Linear Equations do **NOT** have:

### Examples: These are **NOT** linear equations:

y^{2} − 2 = 0 | ||

3√x − y = 6 | ||

x^{3}/2 = 16 |

### Slope-Intercept Form

The most common form is the slope-intercept equation of a straight line:

### Example: y = 2x + 1

- Slope:
**m = 2** - Intercept:
**b = 1**

### Point-Slope Form

Another common one is the Point-Slope Form of the equation of a straight line:

y − y |

### Example: y − 3 = (¼)(x − 2)

It is in the form **y − y _{1} = m(x − x_{1})** where:

- y
_{1}= 3 - m = ¼
- x
_{1}= 2

### General Form

And there is also the General Form of the equation of a straight line:

Ax + By + C = 0 |

(A and B cannot both be 0) |

### Example: 3x + 2y − 4 = 0

It is in the form **Ax + By + C = 0** where:

There are other, less common forms as well.

### As a Function

Sometimes a linear equation is written as a function, with f(x) instead of y:

y = 2x − 3 |

f(x) = 2x − 3 |

These are the same! |

And functions are not always written using f(x):

y = 2x − 3 |

w(u) = 2u − 3 |

h(z) = 2z − 3 |

These are also the same! |

### The Identity Function

There is a special linear function called the "Identity Function":

f(x) = x

And here is its graph:

It makes a 45° (its slope is 1)

It is called "Identity" because what comes out is **identical** to what goes in:

In | Out |
---|---|

0 | 0 |

5 | 5 |

−2 | −2 |

etc | etc |

### Constant Functions

Another special type of linear function is the Constant Function it is a horizontal line:

f(x) = C

No matter what value of "x", f(x) is always equal to some constant value.

### Using Linear Equations

You may like to read some of the things you can do with lines:

Gradient (Slope) of a Straight LineY Intercept of a Straight LineDistance Between 2 PointsFinding Intercepts From an EquationGraph MenuAlgebra Menu

Copyright © MathsIsFun.com

Sours: https://www.mathsisfun.com/algebra/linear-equations.html## How to Write Linear Equations in Algebra

Note that the standard form of a linear equation is:

Where m = slope and b = y-intercept.

Calculate the slope of the line. The slope can be found by selecting two points on the line, determining the vertical rise and the horizontal run between the points and dividing them. For example, if (3,4) and (5,6) are on the line, the slope between them would be (5 - 3) / (6 - 4), simplified to (2) / (2), simplified to 1. Include negative values, since slopes can be positive or negative.

Determine or calculate the y-intercept of the line. The y-intercept is the y-coordinate of the point where the line passes through the y-axis of the coordinate plane. For example, if the point of intersection with the y-axis is (0,5), the y-intercept would be 5. The y-intercept can be found by physically locating it on the graph or by locating the given point on the line that has an x-coordinate of 0. That point is the point of intersection. The y-intercept will be positive if it intersects the y-axis above the x-axis or negative if it intersects below the x-axis.

Write the equation y = mx + b, substituting the values for m and b you calculated or determined. The m will be your slope, and the b will be your y-intercept. Leave the y and x variables in the equation as letter variables. Include the sign of the numbers you plug in. For example, if I discovered my slope to be -3 and my y-intercept to be 5, my linear equation would be y = -3x + 5. The linear equation is complete and correctly written when the (m) and (b) are properly incorporated into the equation.

#### Tips

Factor negative signs into the linear equation carefully. If b = -8 and m = 5, the algebraic linear equation would be written y = 5x + (- 8), or simplified, y = 5x - 8.

When in doubt, check your work.

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## Writing linear equations using the slope-intercept form

An equation in the slope-intercept form is written as

$$y=mx+b$$

Where m is the slope of the line and b is the y-intercept. You can use this equation to write an equation if you know the slope and the y-intercept.

**Example**

Find the equation of the line

Choose two points that are on the line

Calculate the slope between the two points

$$m=\frac{y_{2}\, -y_{1}}{x_{2}\, -x_{1}}=\frac{\left (-1 \right )-3}{3-\left ( -3 \right )}=\frac{-4}{6}=\frac{-2}{3}$$

We can find the b-value, the y-intercept, by looking at the graph

b = 1

We've got a value for m and a value for b. This gives us the linear function

$$y=-\frac{2}{3}x+1$$

In many cases the value of b is not as easily read. In those cases, or if you're uncertain whether the line actually crosses the y-axis in this particular point you can calculate b by solving the equation for b and then substituting x and y with one of your two points.

We can use the example above to illustrate this. We've got the two points (-3, 3) and (3, -1). From these two points we calculated the slope

$$m=-\frac{2}{3}$$

This gives us the equation

$$y=-\frac{2}{3}x+b$$

From this we can solve the equation for b

$$b=y+\frac{2}{3}x$$

And if we put in the values from our first point (-3, 3) we get

$$b=3+\frac{2}{3}\cdot \left ( -3 \right )=3+\left ( -2 \right )=1$$

If we put in this value for b in the equation we get

$$y=-\frac{2}{3}x+1$$

which is the same equation as we got when we read the y-intercept from the graph.

To summarize how to write a linear equation using the slope-interception form you

- Identify the slope, m. This can be done by calculating the slope between two known points of the line using the slope formula.
- Find the y-intercept. This can be done by substituting the slope and the coordinates of a point (x, y) on the line in the slope-intercept formula and then solve for b.

Once you've got both m and b you can just put them in the equation at their respective position.

**Video lesson**

Find the equation to the graph

**5615**5616 5617