There are several different ways to graph linear equations. You've already learned how to graph using a table of values. That's okay for the beginner, but it can be a little time consuming.
Using slope intercept form is one of the quickest and easiest ways to graph a linear equation.
Before we begin, I need to introduce a little vocabulary. We are going to talk about x and y intercepts.
An x intercept is the point where your line crosses the x-axis. The y intercept is the point where your line crosses the y-axis.
We are only going to focus on the y intercept in this lesson, but you'll need to know x intercept for later.
Let's take a look at intercepts
Slope intercept form is used when your linear equation is written in the form:
x and y are your variables. m will be a numeral, which is your slope. b will also be a numeral and this is the y-intercept.
In this form only (when your equation is written as y = ....) the coefficient of x is the slope and the constant is the y intercept.
Let's look at a few examples and I promise that you'll LOVE this new way of graphing!
Need a little more clarification? No problem, just check out the following video. Example 1 will be explained again step by step.
Let's take a look at one more example.
Notice that the slope in this equation is negative. This means that our line must be "falling" from left to right.
Always double check your line and your slope. If your slope is positive, then your line should "rise" from left to right. If your slope is negative, then your line should "fall" from left to right.
Here's a quick summary of this lesson:
Tip: You have to be very accurate in plotting your points and drawing your lines in order to be able to read your graph to find other solutions!
If you need more practice, click here to try a few practice problems.
Graphing Equations Unit
Sign Up for Algebra Class E-courses
"I'd like to start off by relaying my sincerest gratitude for your dedication in teaching algebra. Your methodology is by far the simplest to follow, primarily because you take the time to include the small steps in between that most other teachers leave out.
It helps to know why you are doing something. I am 45 and heading to college to get my BS in Business. I need to brush up, hence the visit to your site. Great Job!"
Jimmy - United States
"I stumbled onto your site after I found out that I needed to use some fundamental algebra for an assignment. Turns out I had forgotten some things and your great site helped me remember them like "that" (snap of fingers). The organization of the site let me find exactly what I was looking for so easily. Kudos to you for maintaining such a great resource for students of all ages!"
Tom - United States
"I just wanted to write and basically thank you for making such a wonderful website! I'm 20 years old and about to take a basic placement test for college. I wanted to brush up on my Algebra skills and I stumbled upon your site. I'm amazed at how simple you make it and how fast I'm remembering Algebra! I don't remember getting most of the answers right when I had an actual teacher in front of me teaching this. Thanks a lot!"
Elizabeth - United States
"I am a pensioner living in South Africa. I stumbled on your website, the best thing that could ever happen to me! Your course in Algebra has helped me a lot to better understand the different concepts. Thank you very much for sharing your skills for teaching math to even people like me. Please do not stop, as I am sure that your teachings have helped thousands of people like me all over the world."
Noel - South Africa
This is an amazing program. In one weekend I used it to teach my Grade 9 daughter most of the introductory topics in Linear Relations. I took her up to Rate of Change and now she can do her homework by herself.
Reg - United States
Copyright © 2009-2015 Karin Hutchinson ALL RIGHTS RESERVED