Beginning Algebra, 2/e

K. Elayn Martin-Gay, University of New Orleans, Lakefront

Published August, 1996 by Prentice Hall Engineering, Science & Math

[Book Cover]
Copyright 1997, 678 pp.
ISBN 0-13-353665-3

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This book offers a sound mathematics presentation, useful pedagogy, and a superb problem-solving framework to thoroughly prepare students for a second or intermediate algebra course. The Second Edition features a greater incorporation of AMATYC and NCTM standards, reflected in an increased emphasis on visualization and graphing, carefully revised problems and exercises, and more data analysis.


A six-step problem-solving approach is woven consistently throughout. Students are asked to:
1) Understand
2) Assign
3) Illustrate
4) Translate into a model (or equation)
5) Complete
6) Interpret a variety of realistic problems.

Problems feature real-world topics and are applied to a variety of disciplines.

Cumulative Reviews in every chapter after Chapter 1 include worked examples from previous chapters. Students can find the answers in an appendix, as well as a reference to where the problem first appeared so that a complete solution is available.

Accessible Presentation

Mental Math boxes ask students to employ analytical skills and solve problems intuitively. They can be incorporated in-class as oral exercises or as preludes to exercise sets.

Conceptual Exercises, identified by an icon, ask students to verbalize solutions, increasing students' "writing in mathematics" skills.

NEW--An increased emphasis on data interpretation; real data is integrated throughout, beginning with an introduction to bar graphs in Section 1.1. With the emphasis on interpreting data via graphs, students reinforce what they've learned visually and see math's tangibility.

NEW--Exercise sets have been carefully reviewed and revised to include real data. The sets are graded in level of difficulty, and feature more conceptual and current real-world applications.

NEW--Highlights at the end of each chapter contain key definitions, concepts and examples to help students retain what they have learned.

Treatment of graphing and scientific calculators is integrated in separate boxes and noted in exercise sets (one icon for graphing calculators, another for scientific). Instructors can pick and choose when and how they want to integrate technology into their course.

NEW--Graphing is introduced earlier and developed in-depth in more than one chapter (In line with AMATYC and NCTM standards). An early introduction to graphing helps students see the math. An emphasis on visualization through graphing is integrated; by Chapter 7, students are ready to master functions and equations of lines.

NEW--Collaborative Projects are introduced in the chapter opener. At the end of each chapter concepts covered in the chapter opener are incorporated into a discovery-based activity designed for students to work together.

NEW--Skills Practice exercises integrated throughout help mathematically challenged students make connections between math, other courses, and the real world.

Table Of Contents

(NOTE: Each chapter ends with a group activity, highlights, review, test, and cumulative review.)
1. Review of Real Numbers.
Symbols and Sets of Numbers. Fractions. Exponents and Order of Operations. Introduction to Variable Expressions and Equations. Adding Real Numbers. Subtracting Real Numbers. Multiplying and Dividing Real Numbers. Properties of Real Numbers. Reading Graphs.
2. Equation, Inequalities, and Problem Solving.
Simplifying Algebraic Expressions. The Addition Property of Equality. The Multiplication Property of Equality. Solving Linear Equations. An Introduction to Problem Solving. Formulas and Problem Solving. Percent and Problem Solving. Further Problem Solving. Solving Linear Inequalities.
3. Graphing.
The Rectangular Coordinate System. Graphing Linear Equations. Intercepts. Slope. Graphing Linear Inequalities.
4. Exponents and Polynomials.
Exponents. Adding and Subtracting Polynomials. Multiplying Polynomials. Special Products. Negative Exponents and Scientific Notation. Division of Polynomials.
5. Factoring Polynomials.
The Greatest Common Factor and Factoring by Grouping. Factoring Trinomials of the Form x^2 + bx + c. Factoring Trinomials of the Form ax^2 + bx + c. Factoring Binomials. Choosing a Factoring Strategy. Solving Quadratic Equations by Factoring. Quadratic Equations and Problem Solving.
6. Rational Expressions.
Simplifying Rational Expressions. Multiplying and Dividing Rational Expressions. Adding and Subtracting Rational Expressions with Common Denominators and Least Common Denominators. Adding and Subtracting Rational Expressions with Unlike Denominators. Simplifying Complex Fractions. Solving Equations Containing Rational Expressions. Ratio and Proportion. Rational Equations and Problem Solving.
7. Further Graphing.
The Slope-Intercept Form. The Point-Slope Form. Graphing Nonlinear Equations. An Introduction to Functions.
8. Solving Systems of Linear Equations.
Solving Systems of Linear Equations by Graphing. Solving Systems of Linear Equations by Substitution. Solving Systems of Linear Equations by Addition. Systems of Linear Equations and Problem Solving. Systems of Linear Inequalities.
9. Roots and Radicals.
Introduction to Radicals. Simplifying Radicals. Adding and Subtracting Radical Expressions. Multiplying and Dividing Radical Expressions. Solving Equations Containing Radicals. Radical Equations and Problem Solving. Rational Exponents.
10. Solving Quadratic Equations.
Solving Quadratic Equations by the Square Root Method. Solving Quadratic Equations by Completing the Square. Solving Quadratic Equations by the Quadratic Formula. Summary of Methods for Solving Quadratic Equations. Complex Solutions to Quadratic Equations. Graphing Quadratic Equations.
Operations on Decimals. Review of Angles, Lines, and Special Triangles. Review of Geometric Figures. Mean, Median, and Mode. Table of Squares and Square Roots. Answers to Selected Exercises.
Photo Credits.

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