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Sample Space: The set of all possible outcomes of an experiment.

Pinching Theorem Sandwich Theorem Squeeze Theorem: A theorem which allows the computation of
the limit of an expression by trapping the expression between two other expressions which have limits
that are easier to compute.

SAS Congruence: Side-angle-side congruence. When two triangles have corresponding angles and sides
that arecongruent as shown below, the triangles are congruent.

SAS Similarity: Side-angle-side similarity. When two triangles have corresponding angles that
are congruent and corresponding sides with identical ratios as shown below, the triangles are similar.

Satisfy: To show that substituting one or more variables into an equation or inequality "works out". That
is, the equation or inequality simplifies to a true statement.

System of Inequalities: Two or more inequalities containing common variable(s). Note: Systems of
inequalities sometimes include equations as well as inequalities.

Scalar: Any real number, or any quantity that can be measured using a single real number. Temperature,
length, and mass are all scalars. A scalar is said to have magnitude but no direction. A quantity with both
direction and magnitude, such as force or velocity, is called avector.

Scale Factor: The ratio of any two corresponding lengths in two similar geometric figures. Note: The
ratio of areas of two similar figures is the square of the scale factor. The ratio of volumes of two similar
figures is the cube of the scale factor.

Scalene Triangle: A triangle for which all three sides have different lengths.

Scatterplot: A graph of paired data in which the data values are plotted as (x, y) points.

Scientific Notation: A standardized way of writing real numbers. In scientific notation, all real numbers
are written in the form a10b, where 1 a < 10 and b is an integer. For example, 351 is written
3.51102 in scientific notation.

Secant sec: The trig function secant, written sec . sec equals. For acute angles, sec can be found by
the SOHCAHTOA definition as shown below on the left. The circle definition, a generalization of
SOHCAHTOA, is shown below on the right. f(x) = sec x is a periodic function with period 2.
Inverse Secant sec-1 Sec-1 arcsec Arcsec
The inverse function of secant.

Secant Line: A line which passes through at least two points of a curve. Note: If the two points are close
together, the secant line is nearly the same as a tangent line.

Second: A unit of angle measure equal to of a minute. There are 60 seconds in one minute and 3600
seconds in one degree. Seconds are indicated using the " symbol, so 1245'33" means 12 degrees, 45
minutes, and 33 seconds, or degrees
Second Derivative: The derivative of a derivative. Usually written f"(x), or y".

Second Derivative Test: A method for determining whether a critical point is a relative
minimum or maximum

Second Order Critical Point: A point on the graph of a function at which the second derivative is either 0
or undefined. A second order critical point may or may not be an inflection point.

Note: The phrase second order critical point is NOT in common usage among mathematicians or in
textbooks. Nevertheless, it is a useful name for a type of point which otherwise has no name.

Second Order Differential Equation: An ordinary differential equation of order 2. That is, a differential
equation in which the highest derivative is a second derivative.

Sector of a Circle: A part of the interior of a circle bounded by two radii and an arc.

Line Segment, Segment: All points between two given points (including the given points themselves).

Segment of a Circle: A part of the interior of a circle bounded by a chord and an arc.

Self-Similarity: A property of fractals in which the pattern of the whole occurs in each part.

Semicircle: Half a circle. That is, a 180 arc.

Semiperimeter: Half the perimeter of a plane figure

Separable Differential Equation: A first order ordinary differential equation which can be solved by
separating all occurrences of the two variables on either side of the equal sign and then integrating.

Sequence: A list of numbers set apart by commas, such as 1, 3, 5, 7, . . .

Sequence of Partial Sums: The sequence of nth partial sums of a series.

Series: The sum of the terms of a sequence. For example, the series for the sequence 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, . . . ,
131, 133 is the sum 1 + 3 + 5 + 7 + 9 + . . . + 131 + 133.

Series Rules: Algebra rules for convergent series are given below.

Set: A group of numbers, variables, geometric figures, or just about anything. Sets are written using set
braces {}. For example, {1,2,3} is the set containing the elements 1, 2, and 3.
Note: Order does not matter in a set. The sets {a,b,c} and {c,a,b} are the same set. Repetition does not
matter either, so {a,b} and {a,a,b,b,b} are the same set.

Set Braces: The symbols { and } which are used to indicate sets.

Set-Builder Notation: A shorthand used to write sets, often sets with an infinite number of elements.
Note: The set {x : x > 0} is read aloud, "the set of all x such that x is greater than 0." It is read aloud
exactly the same way when the colon : is replaced by the vertical line | as in {x | x > 0}.

Arm of an Angle Side of an Angle: Either of the two rays making up an angle.

Side of an Equation: The two expressions on either side of an equation

Side of a Polygon: Any of the line segments that make up a polygon. For example, a triangle has three
sides.

Side of a Polygon: Any of the line segments that make up a polygon. For example, a triangle has three
sides.

Sigma Notation Continued Sum: A notation using the Greek letter sigma () that allows a long sum to be
written compactly.

Significant Digits: A way of describing how precisely a number is written, particularly when the number
is a measurement.

Similar: Identical in shape, although not necessarily the same size.

Similarity Tests for Triangles: AA, HL, SAS, and SSS similarity. These tests describe combinations of
congruent anglesand/or proportional sides that are used to determine if two triangles are similar.

Simple Closed Curve: A connected curve that does not cross itself and ends at the same point where it
begins.

Simple Interest: A method of computing interest. Interest is computed from the (original) principal alone
no matter how much money has accrued so far.

Simplify: To use the rules of arithmetic and algebra to rewrite an expression as simply as possible.

Simpson's Rule: A method for approximating a definite integral using parabolic approximations of f.

Simple Closed Curve: A connected curve that does not cross itself and ends at the same point where it
begins. Examples are circles, ellipses, and polygons.

Note: Despite the name "curve", a simple closed curve does not actually have to curve.

Sine sin: The trig function sine, written sin . For acute angles, sin can be found by the SOHCAHTOA
definition as shown below on the left. The circle definition, a generalization of SOHCAHTOA, is shown
below on the right.
Finally, f(x) = sin x is a periodic function with period 2.

Singular Matrix, Noninvertible Matrix: A square matrix which does not have an inverse. A matrix is
singular if and only if its determinant is zero.
Sinusoid: A wave shaped like the graph of y = sin x. Note: The graphs of both sine and cosine are
sinusoids.

Skew Lines: Lines in three dimensional space that do not intersect and are not parallel.

Slant Height: The diagonal distance from the apex of a right circular cone or a right regular pyramid to
The base.

Slope-Intercept Equation of a Line: y = mx + b, where m is the slope and b is the y-intercept. Slope-
intercept is the form used most often as the simplified equation of a line.

Slope of a Line: A number which is used to indicate the steepness of a line, as well as indicating whether
the line is tilted uphill or downhill. Slope is indicated by the letter m.

SOHCAHTOA: A way of remembering how to compute the sine, cosine, and tangent of an angle.

Solid Geometric Solid/ Solid Geometric Figure: The collective term for all bounded three-
dimensional geometric figures. This includes polyhedra, pyramids, prisms, cylinders, cones, spheres,
ellipsoids, etc.

Solid Geometry: The study of surfaces and solids in space, especially cones, cylinders, prisms, pyramids,
polyhedra, and spheres. Solid geometry also includes the study of points, lines, shapes, and regions in
relation to solids and surfaces. Coordinates are not used.

Solve: Find all solutions to an equation, inequality, or a system of equations and/or inequalities.

Solve Analytically: Use algebraic and/or numeric methods as the main technique for solving a math
problem. Usually when a problem is solved analytically, no graphing calculator is used.

Solve Graphically: Use graphs and/or pictures as the main technique for solving a math problem. When a
problem is solved graphically, graphing calculators are commonly used.

Special Angles: Some of the angles for which the exact values of trig functions are known are listed
below. These special angles from 0 to 360 are listed below with their radian equivalents.

Speed: Distance covered per unit of time. Speed is a nonnegative scalar. For motion in one dimension,
such as on a number line, speed is the absolute value of velocity. For motion in two or three dimensions,
speed is the magnitude of the velocity vector.

Sphere: A three dimensional solid consisting of all points equidistant from a given point. This point is the
center of the sphere. Note: All cross-sections of a sphere are circles.

Spherical Trigonometry: The study of triangles on the surface of a sphere, the sides of which
are arcs of great circles. Useful for navigation.

Spheroid: Usually this means oblate spheroid. Sometimes, however, spheroid refers to any ellipsoid that
is approximately a sphere.
Spiral: A curve on a plane that turns endlessly outward or inward (or both). Spirals usually have polar
equations. A few of the many types of spirals are pictured below.

Square: A rectangle with all four sides of equal length. Formally, a square is a quadrilateral with four
congruent sides and four congruent angles (all 90).

Square Matrix: A matrix with equal numbers of rows and columns.

Square Root: A nonnegative number that must be multiplied times itself to equal a given number.
The square root of x is written or x.

Square Root Rules: Square root rules are a subset of nth root rulesand exponent rules.

Square System of Equations: A linear system of equations in which the number of variables equals the
number of equations. The coefficient matrix of a square system is a square matrix.

Square System of Equations: A linear system of equations in which the number of variables equals the
number of equations. The coefficient matrix of a square system is a square matrix.

Pinching Theorem Sandwich Theorem Squeeze Theorem: A theorem which allows the computation of
the limit of an expression by trapping the expression between two other expressions which have limits
that are easier to compute.

SSA: Side-side-angle. This is NOT one of the congruence tests or similarity tests for triangles.
The fact that two triangles have congruent corresponding angles and sides as shown below does not
mean that the triangles are congruent.

Note: When a SSA correspondence exists there are often two possible configurations for the triangles.

SSS Congruence: Side-side-side congruence. When two triangles have corresponding sides that are
congruent as shown below, the triangles are congruent.

SSS Similarity: Side-side-side similarity. When two triangles have corresponding sides with
identical ratios as shown below, the triangles are similar.

Standard Position: An angle drawn on the x-y plane starting on the positive x-axis and
turning counterclockwise.

Step Discontinuity Jump Discontinuity: A discontinuity for which the graph steps or jumps from one
connected piece of the graph to another.
Formally, it is a discontinuity for which the limits from the left and right both exist but are not equal to
each other.

Step Function: A function that has a graph resembling a staircase. Examples are the floor
function (below) and the ceiling function.

Stewart's Theorem: A theorem relating the length of a cevian to the lengths of the sides of a triangle.
This theorem is easily proven using the law of cosines.
Straight Angle: A 180 angle.

Stretch: Dilation of a Graph A transformation in which all distances on the coordinate plane are
lengthened by multiplying either all x-coordinates (horizontal dilation) or all y-coordinates (vertical
dilation) by a common factor greater than 1.

Note: When the common factor is less than 1 the transformation is called a compression.

Strict Inequality: An inequality that uses the symbols < or >. The symbols and are not used.

Subset: Set A is a subset of set B if all of the elements (if any) of set A are contained in set B. This is
written A B.

Set Subtraction: A way of modifying a set by removing the elements belonging to another set.
Subtraction of sets is indicated by either of the symbols or \. For example, A minus B can be written
either A B or A \ B.

Sum: The result of adding a set of numbers or algebraic expressions.

Sum/Difference Identities: Trig identities which show how to find the sine, cosine, or tangent of
the sum or difference of two given angles. Addition Rule

Sum Rule for Probability: A method for finding the probability that either or both of two events occurs.

Sum to Product Identities: Trig identities which show how to rewrite sums and differences of sines and
cosines as products.

Synthetic Substitution: The process of using synthetic division to evaluate p(c) for a polynomial p(x) and
a number c.

Note: The remainder from synthetic division by x c is equal to p(c).

Simultaneous Equations System of Equations: Two or more equations containing common variable(s).

System of Inequalities: Two or more inequalities containing common variable(s). Note: Systems of
inequalities sometimes include equations as well as inequalities.

Scalar: quantity, like distance, that has only a magnitude, or size.

Schematic diagram: representation of electric circuit using symbols.

Scientific notation: numbers expressed in form M * 10 ^ n , where 1< M < 10, and n is an integer.

Scintillation: flash of light emitted when substance is struck by radiation.

Second: SI unit of time.


Second law of thermodynamics: heat flow only from region of high temperature o region of lower
temperature.

Secondary coil: transformer coil in which varying EMF is induced.

Secondary light colors: yellow, cyan, or magenta light.

Secondary pigment: red, green, or blue pigment.

Self- inductance: induced EMF produced in coil by changing current.

Semiconductor: material in which electrical conduction is smaller than that in a conductor, but more
than in insulator.

Series circuit: circuit in which electrical current flows through each component, one after another.

Series connection: arrangement of electrical devices so that there is only one path through which
current can flow.

Short circuit: low resistance connection between two points, often accidental.

SI: internationally agreed -upon method of using the metric system of measurement.

Significant digit: reliable digits reported in a measurement.

Simple harmonic motion: motion caused by linear restoring that has a period independent of amplitude
of motion.

Simple machine: machine consisting of only one lever, inclined plane, wedge, screw, pulley, or wheel
and axle.

Sine: the ratio of the opposite side and the hypotenuse.

Sliding friction: force between two surfaces in relative motion.

Slope: ratio of the vertical separation, or rise to the horizontal separation, or run.

Solid: state of matter with fixed volume and shape.

Sound level: quantity measuring logarithm of sound intensity in decibels.

Spark chamber: device used to detect path of charged subatomic particles by a spark that jumps along
path of ionization created in a gas.

Specific heat: thermal energy needs to change temperature of unit mass of substance one Kelvin.

Spectroscope: device used to study spectrum of material.


Spectrum: collection of wavelengths in electromagnetic spectrum.

Speed: ratio of distance traveled to time interval.

Speed of light: in vacuum, 2.9979458 * 10^8 m/s.

Spherical aberration: inability of spherical mirror to focus all parallel rays to a single point.

Standing wave: wave with stationary nodes.

Static friction: force that opposes start of motion between two surfaces.

Step- down transformer: transformer with output voltage smaller than input voltage.

Step- up transformer: transformer with output voltage larger than input voltage.

Stimulated emission: emission of photon from excited atom caused by impact fo photon of same
energy.

Strong nuclear force: force of very short range that holds neutrons and protons in nucleus together.

Superconductor: electrical conductor that has no resistance and low temperatures.

Surface wave: wave on surface of liquid with characteristics of both longitudinal and transverse waves.

Symmetry: property that is now charged when operation or reference frame is charged.

Synchrotron: device to accelerate particles in which particles move in circular path.

System: defined collection of objects.

Takeout Angle: The angle cut out of a piece of paper so that the paper can be rolled into a right circular
cone.

Tangent tan: The trig function tangent, written tan . tan equals . For acute angles, tan can be found
by the SOHCAHTOA definition as shown below on the left. The circle definition, a generalization of
SOHCAHTOA, is shown below on the right. f(x) = tan x is a periodic function with period .
Inverse Tangent, tan-1, Tan-1,arctan,Arctan.

Tangent tan: The trig function tangent, written tan . tan equals . For acute angles, tan can be found
by the SOHCAHTOA definition as shown below on the left. The circle definition, a generalization of
SOHCAHTOA, is shown below on the right. f(x) = tan x is a periodic function with period .

Tangent Line: A line that touches a curve at a point without crossing over. Formally, it is a line which
intersects a differentiable curve at a point where the slope of the curve equals the slope of the line.
Tautochrone: A cycloid hanging downwards.

Note: Tautochrone is a term from Greek meaning "the same time." The special property of a
tautochrone is the fact that a bead sliding down a tautochrone-shaped frictionless wire will take the
same amount of time to reach the bottom no matter how high or low the release point. In fact, since a
tautochrone is also a brachistochrone, the bead will take the shortest possible time to reach the bottom
out of all possible shapes of the wire.

Taylor Polynomial/ nth Degree Taylor Polynomial: An approximation of a function using terms from the
function's Taylor series. An nth degree Taylor polynomial uses all the Taylor series terms up to and
including the term using the nth derivative.

Taylor Series: The power series in x a for a function f . Note: If a = 0 the series is called a Maclaurin
series.

Taylor Series Remainder: A quantity that measures how accurately a Taylor polynomial estimates the
sum of a Taylor series.

Term: Parts of an expression or series separated by + or signs, or the parts of a sequence separated by
commas.

Terminal Side of an Angle: The ray where measurement of an angle stops.

Tessellate: To cover a plane with identically shaped pieces which do not overlap or leave blank spaces.
The pieces do not have to be oriented identically. A tessellation may use tiles of one, two, three, or any
finite number of shapes.

Tetrahedron/ Regular Tetrahedron: A polyhedron with four triangular faces, or a pyramid with a
triangular base.

Note: A regular tetrahedron, which has faces that are equilateral triangles, is one of the five platonic
solids.

Theorem: An assertion that can be proved true using the rules of logic. A theorem is proven
from axioms, postulates, or other theorems already known to be true.

Three Dimensional Coordinates: A system for locating points in three dimensions. This is typically done
using (x, y, z) coordinates, but any variables may be used.

Three Dimensions, Three Dimensional, Three Dimensional Space: The property of the space in which we
live and move that indicates motion can take place in three mutually perpendicular directions. This is
often expressed with three-dimensional coordinates.

Tilted Asymptote: A linear asymptote that is neither horizontal nor vertical.

Note: Oblique asymptotes always occur for rational functions which have a numerator polynomial that is
one degree higher than the denominator polynomial.
Torus: A doughnut shape. Formally, a torus is a surface of revolution obtained by revolving (in three
dimensional space) a circle about a line which does not intersect the circle.

Transcendental Numbers: Real numbers that are not algebraic. That is, real numbers that cannot be
a root of a polynomial equation with integer coefficients. e and are transcendental.

Transformations: Operations that alter the form of a figure. The standard transformations
are translations, reflections, dilations (stretches), compressions (contractions or shrinks), and rotations.

Transitive Property of Equality: The following property: If a = b and b = c, then a = c. One of


the equivalence properties of equality.

Note: This is a property of equality and inequalities. One must be cautious, however, when attempting
to develop arguments using the transitive property in other settings.Transitive

Transpose of a Matrix: A matrix which is formed by turning all the rows of a given matrix
into columns and vice-versa. The transpose of matrix A is written AT.

Transversal: A line that cuts across a set of lines or the sides of a plane figure. Transversals often cut
across parallel lines.

Trapezium
US usage: A quadrilateral with no parallel sides.

Trapezoid
US usage, definition 1: A quadrilateral which has a pair of opposite sides which are parallel.
The parallel sides are called the bases, and the other two sides are called the legs.

US usage, definition 2: A quadrilateral which has one parallel pair of opposite sides and one non-parallel
pair of opposite sides. The parallel sides are called the bases, and the other two sides are called the legs.

UK usage: The same as the US word trapezium. The UK word trapezium means the same as the US word
trapezoid, and vice-versa.

Trapezoid Rule: A method for approximating a definite integral using linear approximations of f.

Triangle: A polygon with three sides.

Triangle Inequality: A mathematical restatement of the concept that the shortest distance between
two points is a straight line. The triangle inequality states that the sum of the lengths of any two sides of
a triangle is greater than the length of the third side.

Triangle Inequality with Absolute Value: An alternate version of the triangle inequality.

Triangulation: A method of locating the position of an object by observing the direction and/or distance
to the object from two or more observation points.
Trichotomy: The property of real numbers which guarantees that for any two real numbers a and b,
exactly one of the following must be true: a < b, a = b, or a > b.

Trigonometry, Trig: The study of triangles, with emphasis on calculations involving the lengths
of sides and the measures of angles. Trigonometry is also known as trig.

Trig Functions, Circular Functions: The six functions sine, cosine, tangent, cosecant, secant,
and cotangent. These functions can be defined several different ways. These include SOHCAHTOA
definitions, circle definitions (below), and unit circle definitions.

Trig Identities: Identities involving trig functions

Trinomial: A polynomial with three terms which are not like terms. The following are all trinomials: x2 +
2x - 3, 3x5 - 8x4 + x3, and a2b + 13x + c.

Triple: Multiply by three.

Note: In the vector term triple product, triple means that three vectors are used, not that anything is
multiplied by three.

Triple Root: A root of a polynomial equation with multiplicity 3. Also refers to a zero of a polynomial
function with multiplicity 3.

Triple (Scalar) Product: A way of multiplying three vectors in which the product is a scalar. The absolute
value of a triple product is the volume of the parallelepiped formed by the three vectors.

Trivial: A solution or example that is ridiculously simple and of little interest. Often, solutions or
examples involving the number 0 are considered trivial. Nonzero solutions or examples are
considered nontrivial.

Truncated Cone or Pyramid: A cone or pyramid which has its apex cut off by an intersecting plane. The
plane may be either oblique or parallel to the base.

Note: If the truncating plane is parallel to the base the figure is called a frustum.

Truncated Cylinder or Prism: A cylinder or prism which has one base cut off by an intersecting plane. The
other base is unaffected by the truncation. The truncating plane may be either oblique or parallel to the
bases.

Truncating a Number: A method of approximating a decimal number by dropping all decimal places past
a certain point without rounding.
For example, 3.14159265... can be truncated to 3.1415.

Note: If 3.14159265...were rounded to the same decimal place, the approximation would be 3.1416.

Twin Primes: Prime numbers that are two apart from each other, such as 3 and 5. Other examples are 11
and 13, 17 and 19, 101 and 103.
Two Dimensions, Two Dimensional: The property of a plane that indicates that motion can take place in
two perpendicular directions.

Two Intercept: Form for the Equation of a Line where a is the x-intercept and b is the y-intercept.

Tangent: the ratio of the opposite side and the adjacent side.

Temperature: measure of hotness of object on a quantitative scale. In gases, proportional to average


kinetic energy of molecules.

Terminal velocity: velocity of falling object reached when force of air resistance equals weight.

Test charge: charge used, in principle, to measure electric field.

Thermal energy: internal energy. Sum of kinetic and potential energy of random motion of particles
making up object.

Thermal equilibrium: state between two or more bodies where temperatures do not change.

Thermal expansion: increase of length or volume of object due to change in temperature.

Thermometer: device used to measure temperature.

Thermonuclear reaction: nuclear fusion.

Thin- film interference: light interference caused by reflection from both front and rear surface of thin
layer of liquid or solid.

Timbre: sound quality or tone color; spectrum of sound frequencies that produce a complete wave.

Time interval: difference in time between two clock readings.

Tokamak: type of fusion reactor.

Tone color: timbre or tone quality.

Torque: product of force and the lever arm.

Trajectory: the path followed by projectile.

Transformer: device to transform energy from one electrical circuit to another by means of mutual
inductance between two coils.

Transistor: semiconductor device that controls large current by means of small voltage changes.

Translucent: material transmitting light without but distorting its path.

Transmutation: nuclear change from one element to another.


Transparent: material transmitting light without distorting directions of waves.

Transverse waves: wave in which disturbance is perpendicular to direction of travel of wave.

Traveling wave: moving, periodic disturbance in a medium or field.

Trigonometry: branch of math that deals with the relationship among angles and sides of triangles.

Trough of wave: low point of wave motion, where displacement is most negative.

u-Substitution, Substitution Method: An integration method that essentially involves using the chain
rule in reverse.

Unbounded Set of Numbers: A set of numbers that is not bounded. That is, a set that lacks either
a lower bound or an upper bound. For example, the sequence 1, 2, 3, 4,... is unbounded.

Uncountable/ Uncountably Infinite: Describes a set which contains more elements than the set
of integers. Formally, an uncountably infinite set is an infinite set that cannot have its elements put
into one-to-one correspondence with the set of integers.

Undecagon: A polygon with eleven sides.

Undefined Slope: No Slope. The "slope" of a vertical line. A vertical line has undefined slope because
all points on the line have the same x-coordinate. As a result the formula used for slope has
a denominator of 0, which makes the slope undefined.

Underdetermined System of Equations: A linear system of equations that has fewer equations than
variables. For example, a system with two equations and three unknowns is underdetermined. Note that
an underdetermined system might be either consistent or inconsistent, depending on the equations.

Uniform: All the same or all in the same manner; constant.

Union of Sets: Combining the elements of two or more sets. Union is indicated by the (cup) symbol.

Unit Circle: The circle with radius 1 which is centered at the origin on the x-y plane.

Unit Circle Trig Definitions: A set of definitions of the six trig functions sine, cosine, tangent,
cosecant, secant, and cotangent.

Unit Vector: A vector of magnitude 1. Often a unit vector is written using the ^ symbol. For example, is
a unit vector pointing in the same direction as vector u.

Upper Bound of a Set: Any number that is greater than or equal to all of the elements of the set. For
example, 5 is an upper bound of the interval [0,1]. So are 4, 3, 2, and 1.
Uniform acceleration: constant acceleration.

Uniform circular motion: motion in a circle of constant radius with constant speed.

Variable: A quantity that can change or that may take on different values. Variable also refers to a letter
or symbol representing a quantity

Varignon Parallelogram of a Quadrilateral: The parallelogram formed by connecting


the midpoints of adjacent sides of a quadrilateral.

Vector: A quantity, drawn as an arrow, with both direction and magnitude. For example, force and
velocity are vectors. If a quantity has magnitude but not direction, it is called a scalar. Temperature,
length, and mass are examples of scalars. Multivariable Calculus, Multivariable Analysis

Vector Calculus: The use of calculus (limits, derivatives, and integrals) with two or more independent
variables, or two or more dependent variables. This can be thought of as the calculus of three
dimensional figures.

Velocity: The rate of change of the position of an object. For motion in one dimension, such as along the
number line, velocity is a scalar. For motion in two dimensions or through three-dimensional space,
velocity is a vector.

Venn Diagrams: Illustrations of set operations as shown below.

Verify a Solution, Check a Solution: The process of making sure a solution is correct by making sure
it satisfies any and all equations and/or inequalities in a problem.

Vertex: A corner point of a geometric figure. For a polygon, vertices are where adjacent sides meet. For
an angle, the vertex is where the two rays making up the angle meet.

Note: If the figure is a curve or surface, the vertices are the points of maximum curvature.

Vertices of an Ellipse: The points at which an ellipse makes its sharpest turns. The vertices are on
the major axis (the line through the foci).

Vertices of a Hyperbola: The points at which a hyperbola makes its sharpest turns. The vertices are on
the major axis (the line through the foci).

Vertex of a Parabola: The point at which a parabola makes its sharpest turn. The vertex is halfway
between the directrix and the focus.

Vertical: Straight up and down. For example, a wall is vertical.

Vertical Angles: In the diagram below, angles 1 and 4 are vertical. So are angles 2 and 3. Vertical angles
are angles opposite one another at the intersection of two lines. Vertical angles are congruent.
Vertical Line Equation: x = a, where a is the x-intercept.

Vertical Line Test: A test use to determine if a relation is a function. A relation is a function if there are
no vertical lines that intersect the graph at more than one point.

Vertical Reflection: A reflection in which a plane figure flips over vertically. Note: A vertical reflection has
a horizontal axis of reflection.

Vertical Stretch, Vertical Dilation: A stretch in which a plane figure is distorted vertically.

Vertical Shift, Vertical Translation: A shift in which a plane figure moves vertically.

Vertices of an Ellipse: The points at which an ellipse makes its sharpest turns. The vertices are on
the major axis (the line through the foci).

Vertices of a Hyperbola: The points at which a hyperbola makes its sharpest turns. The vertices are on
the major axis (the line through the foci).

Vinculum: The horizontal line drawn as part of a fraction or radical.

Volume by Parallel Cross Sections: The formula below gives the volume of a solid. A(x) is the formula for
the area of parallel cross-sections over the entire length of the solid.

Valence band: in a solid, the range of energies of electrons that are bound to atoms.

Vector quantity: quantity having both magnitude (size) and direction.

Vector resolution: process of finding the effective value of a component in a given direction.

Velocity: ratio of change in position to time interval over which change takes place.

Velocity- time graph: plot of velocity of object as a function of time.

Virtual image: point from which light rays appear to diverge without actually doing so.

Viscous fluid: fluid that creates force that opposes motion of objects through it. The force is
proportional to objects speed.

Volatile liquid: liquid that is easily vaporized.

Washer: The region between two concentric circles which have different radii.

Washer Method: A technique for finding the volume of a solid of revolution. The washer method is a
generalized version of the disk method. Both the washer and disk methods are specific cases of volume
by parallel cross-sections.
Wavelength: The period of a sinusoid. Note: This term is not typically used in a mathematics setting.

Weighted Average: A method of computing a kind of arithmetic mean of a set of numbers in which
some elements of the set carry more importance (weight) than others.

Whole Numbers, Nonnegative Integers: The numbers 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, etc

Watt: unit of power, one joule per second.

Wavelength: distance between corresponding points on two successive waves.

Wave pulse: single disturbance moving through a medium or field.

Weak boson: particle that carries or transmits the weak interaction of force.

Weak interaction: force involved in beta decay of the neutron and atomic nuclei; one aspect of the
electroweak force.

Weight: force of gravity of an object.

Weightlessness: object in freefall, on which only the gravitational force acts.

Wilson cloud chamber: chamber containing supersaturated vapor through which ionizing radiation
leaves trails of visible droplets.

Work: product of force and displacement in the direction of the force.

Work function: energy needed to remove an electron from metal.

Work energy theorem: work done on object is equal to the change in its kinetic energy.

x-intercept: A point at which a graph intersects the x-axis. The x-intercepts of a function must be real
numbers, unlike roots and zeros.

x-y Plane: The plane formed by the x-axis and the y-axis

x-z Plane: The plane formed by the x-axis and the z-axis.

X ray: high- energy photons; high- frequency, short-wavelength electromagnetic waves.

X-ray diffraction: A complicated technique using x-rays to "create an image" where no lense to focus
the light rays is available.

X-ray images: Images such as photographs or computer enhanced images produced by bombarding a
target with x-rays.
Y

Young's modulus: A constant of proportionality associated with the change in length of a material
according to its elastic properties.

Y-coordinate: The second number in and ordered pair. It refers to distance on the y-axis.

z-intercept: A point at which a graph intersects the z-axis.

Zero: The number which indicates no quantity, size, or magnitude. Zero is neither negative norpositive.

Note: Zero is the additive identity.

Zero Dimensions, Zero Dimensional: The property of a point that indicates no motion is possible without
leaving that point. Formally, saying a point has zero dimensions means that the only vector contained on
the point is the zero vector.

Zero Matrix: A matrix for which all elements are equal to 0. Note: The zero matrix is
the identity for matrix addition.

Zero-point energy: The lowest energy state of molecular vibration