{{ option.icon }} {{ option.label }} arrow_right
menu_book {{ printedBook.name}}
arrow_left {{ state.menu.current.label }}
{{ option.icon }} {{ option.label }} arrow_right
arrow_left {{ state.menu.current.current.label }}
{{ option.icon }} {{ option.label }}
arrow_left {{ state.menu.current.current.current.label }}
{{ option.icon }} {{ option.label }}
Use offline
Expand menu menu_open
Quadratic Functions

Describing Transformations of Quadratic Functions

{{ 'ml-article-collection-answers-hints-solutions' | message }}
{{ topic.label }}
{{ result.displayTitle }}
{{ result.subject.displayTitle }}


Direct messages

Quadratic functions are no exception when it comes to the types of transformations they can undergo. Applying a translation, reflection, stretch, or shrink to a quadratic function always leads to another quadratic function.


Transformations of Quadratic Functions



By adding some number to every function value,
its graph is translated vertically. To instead translate it horizontally, a number is subtracted from the input of the function rule.
The number h is subtracted and not added, so that a positive h translates the graph to the right.
Translate graph to the right

Translate graph upward

Notice that if the quadratic function f(x)=ax2 is translated both vertically and horizontally, the resulting function is
This is exactly the vertex form of a quadratic function. The vertex of f(x)=ax2 is located at (0,0). When the graph is then translated h units horizontally and k units vertically, the vertex moves to (h,k).



A function is reflected in the x-axis by changing the sign of all function values:
Graphically, all points on the graph move to the opposite side of the x-axis, while maintaining their distance to the x-axis.
Reflect graph in x-axis

A graph is instead reflected in the y-axis, moving all points on the graph to the opposite side of the y-axis, by changing the sign of the input of the function.
Note that the y-intercept is preserved.
Reflect graph in y-axis


Stretch and Shrink

A function graph is vertically stretched or shrunk by multiplying the function rule by some constant a>0:
All vertical distances from the graph to the x-axis are changed by the factor a. Thus, preserving any x-intercepts.
Stretch graph vertically

By instead multiplying the input of a function rule by some constant a>0,
its graph will be horizontally stretched or shrunk by the factor Since the x-value of y-intercepts is 0, they are not affected by this transformation.
Stretch graph horizontally


Determine the transformed quadratic function


Reflecting f in the x-axis, and then adding 1 to the input of the resulting function, gives g. Determine which graph, I or II, corresponds to g.

Show Solution expand_more

By applying the transformations to the graph of f, it will overlap with either I or II. This way, we can determine which graph is that of g. The reflection in the x-axis moves every point on the graph to the other side of the x-axis.

Adding 1 to the input of the resulting function gives us g:
We can recognize this as a translation of by 1 unit to the left. Graphing this translation, we see that the graph of g coincides with graph II.

Thus, II is the graph of g.


Describe the transformation of the quadratic function

The rules of f and g are given such that g is a transformation of f.
Describe the transformation(s) f underwent to become g. Then, write the rule of g in vertex form and plot its graph.
Show Solution expand_more
Notice that subtracting 1 from the input of f and adding 2 to the output gives the function g. We can recognize the subtraction from the input as a translation to the right by 1 unit. Adding 2 to the output corresponds to a translation upward by 2 units. Thus, f has been translated 1 unit to the right and 2 units upward. The function g is defined by
so we have to find f(x1) to be able to state the rule of g. This is done by replacing every x in the rule of f with x1.
Substituting this into the rule of g gives us
Notice that this function is already written in vertex form. To graph the function, we'll start by plotting the vertex, (1,2), and the axis of symmetry.

Substituting x=0 into the rule g(x) gives us the y-intercept.


We can now plot the point (0,4), and reflect it in the axis of symmetry at (2,4).

Now, connecting the points with a parabola gives the desired graph.

{{ 'mldesktop-placeholder-grade-tab' | message }}
{{ 'mldesktop-placeholder-grade' | message }} {{ article.displayTitle }}!
{{ grade.displayTitle }}
{{ 'ml-tooltip-premium-exercise' | message }}
{{ 'ml-tooltip-programming-exercise' | message }} {{ 'course' | message }} {{ exercise.course }}
{{ focusmode.exercise.exerciseName }}
{{ 'ml-btn-previous-exercise' | message }} arrow_back {{ 'ml-btn-next-exercise' | message }} arrow_forward
arrow_left arrow_right