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Partial Fractions, Theory and Practice with Mathematica

John H. Mathews
Organization: California State University Fullerton
Department: Mathematics
URL: http://mathfaculty.fullerton.edu/mathews/
Journal / Anthology

Mathematics and Computer Education
Year: 1990
Volume: 24
Issue: 3
Page range: 257-266

In calculus, students are introduced to the partial fraction decomposition of a rational function of the form F(x) = P(x)/Q(x), where P(x) and Q(x) are polynomials with real coefficients of degrees m and n, respectively. Because most textbooks give no indication of the underlying theory, interest in this problem has increased. The purpose of this article is to present yet another view and illustrate how the computer algebra software Mathematica can be of assistance in both a computational and theoretical way.