Partial Fractions Explained
University of Oxford
Date: 30 December, 2003
I learned about partial fractions in high school and was taught a recipe for expressing a rational function by its partial fraction expansion. I was never taught why the recipe worked, or even given a precise algorithm for carrying out the expansion. In this article, I attempt to fill this gap for inquisitive students.
In what follows, I will be working with polynomials over an arbitrary field . If you don't know what a field is, just think of the reals or the complex numbers. I will denote the degree of a polynomial by .
- Some Ancillary Results About Polynomials
- The Partial Fraction Algorithm
- About this document ...
- Maths Home Page
Gihan Marasingha 2005-09-19