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Functions and Graphs

Function, domain, independent variable Graph, increasing/decreasing, even/odd

Definition: Function
A function f from set A to set B is a rule of correspondence that assigns to each element x in set A exactly one element y in set B. Set A is the domain (or set of inputs) of the function f, and set B contains range (or set of outputs).

Characteristics of a Function
1. Each element in A (domain) must be matched with an element of B (range). 2. Each element in A is matched to not more than one element in B. 3. Some elements in B may not be matched with any element in A. 4. Two or more elements of A may be matched with the same element of B.

Functional Notation
Read f(x) = 3x - 4 x inside parenthesis is the independent variable. f outside parenthesis is the dependent variable. For the function f(x) = 3x - 4, f(5) = 3(5) - 4 = 15 - 4 = 11, and f(-2) = 3(-2) - 4 = - 6 - 4 = -10.

Vertical Line Test for a Function

A set of points in a coordinate plane is the graph of y as a function of x if and only if no vertical line intersects the graph at more than one point.

Even and Odd Functions


1. A function given by y = f(x) is even if, for each x in the domain, f(-x) = f(x). 2. A function given by y = f(x) is odd if, for each x in the domain, f(-x) = - f(x).