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Which of the four operations on functions do you think is the easiest to perform? What...

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yissy | Student, College Freshman | (Level 1) Honors

Posted December 25, 2012 at 8:46 PM via web

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Which of the four operations on functions do you think is the easiest to perform? What is the most difficult? Explain why.

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embizze | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted December 26, 2012 at 1:35 AM (Answer #1)

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I believe that addition is the easiest operation to perform on functions. You need only recognize like terms and add the coefficients.

Subtraction (which is just addition) causes students trouble, usually because they forget to distribute.

Multiplication is generally easy, but can be tedious. Multiplying two 5th degree polynomials is time and space consuming.

Division is probably the hardest operation. It can be quite simple (if, for example, you are dealing with power functions) but can be very time consuming when dealing with polynomials, etc...

Composition can be quite easy to perform, but managing the domains of the functions can be challenging. (Not one of the four basic functions, but usually taught soon after basic operations on functions.)

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