Integration Using Partial Fractions**

  • In algebra, the partial fraction decomposition (or partial fraction expansion) of a rational function is an operation that consists of expressing the fraction as a sum of a polynomial (possibly zero) and one or several fractions with a simpler denominator.

    • Review: A rational function is a fraction such that the numerator and the denominator are both polynomials.

  • The importance of the partial fraction decomposition lies in the fact that it provides algorithms for various computations with rational functions, including the explicit computation of antiderivatives, which is how we will be using it in this section.

  • Prerequisite Understanding:

    • Partial fraction decomposition of a rational fraction (into linear denominators)

    • Solving systems of equations

    • Basic Integration rules

    • Integration by Substitution

Essential Questions

How are indefinite integrals evaluated using partial fractions?