How to Determine the Degree of a Polynomial

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Determine the degree of a polynomial by calculating the highest value of an exponent in the equation. Solve a polynomial equation for the degree of the polynomial with help from a tutor in this free video on math.

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Video Transcript

Hi my name is Samir Malik, and I'm a private tutor for middle-school and high-school students here in the Austin area. Today we're going to be discussing degree of polynomials. Now, a polynomial is an equation which has a variable in it, and some of these variables will have exponents attached to them. Now, the exponent which has the highest degree will be defined as the degree of the polynomial. So for example if a polynomial is 5x to the power of 5 minus 2x to the power of 2, we realize that the degree of the polynomial is 5. Because the highest exponent in this polynomial is 5. So I'd like to illustrate this with an example so you can see the example of a polynomial and then we'll solve the degree of that polynomial as well. So we're able to see here that in this polynomial we have 3 minus 5x plus 2x to the power of 5 minus 7x to the power of 9. And we see here we have two exponents here, we have one exponent which is to the power of 5, and we have another exponent which is to the power of 9. The highest exponent equals 9, so the degree of this polynomial is 9. So we're able to understand here and see how we can solve to find the degree of a polynomial. We just need to find the highest value of the exponent and that will be the degree of the polynomial.

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