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Tangent Function

The tangent function

f(x) = a*tan(bx+c)+d

and its properties such as graph, period, phase shift and asymptotes are explored
interactively by changing the parameters a, b, c and d using an applet. See figure
below for main panel of the applet showing the graph of tangent function in blue and
the vertical asymptotes in red
.

You may also want to consider another tutorial on the trigonometric unit circle .

Once you finish the present tutorial, you may want to go through a self test on trigonometric
graphs .

Interactive Tutorial

How do the 4 coefficients a,b,c and d affect the graph of f(x)?


1.  use the scrollbar to set a=1,b=1,c=0 and d=0. Write down f(x) and take note of the
period phase shift and positions of asymptotes (in red)of f(x)? Now change a , how does
it affect the graph?

2.  set a=1,c=0,d=0 and change b. Find the period from the graph and compare it to pi/|b|.
How does b affect the graph of f(x)?How does it affect the asymptotes?

3.  set a=1,b=1,d=0 and change c starting from zero going slowly to positive large values.
Take note of the shift, is it left or right, and compare it to -c/b.
4. set a=1,b=1,d=0 and change c starting from zero going slowly to negative smaller values.
Take note of the shift, is it left or right, and compare it to -c/b.
5. repeat 3 and 4 above for b=2,3 and 4.
6. set a,b and c to non zero values and change d. What is the direction of the shift of the
graph?
7. What parameters affect the positions of the asymptotes? Explain algebraically.