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## Algebra 1

### Course: Algebra 1 > Unit 9

Lesson 2: Constructing arithmetic sequences- Recursive formulas for arithmetic sequences
- Recursive formulas for arithmetic sequences
- Recursive formulas for arithmetic sequences
- Explicit formulas for arithmetic sequences
- Explicit formulas for arithmetic sequences
- Explicit formulas for arithmetic sequences
- Arithmetic sequence problem
- Converting recursive & explicit forms of arithmetic sequences
- Converting recursive & explicit forms of arithmetic sequences
- Converting recursive & explicit forms of arithmetic sequences
- Arithmetic sequences review

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# Converting recursive & explicit forms of arithmetic sequences

CCSS.Math:

Learn how to convert between recursive and explicit formulas of arithmetic sequences.

Before taking this lesson, make sure you know how to find recursive formulas and explicit formulas of arithmetic sequences.

## Converting from a recursive formula to an explicit formula

An arithmetic sequence has the following recursive formula.

Recall that this formula gives us the following two pieces of information:

- The first term is start color #0d923f, 3, end color #0d923f
- To get any term from its previous term,
**add start color #ed5fa6, 2, end color #ed5fa6.**In other words, the common difference is start color #ed5fa6, 2, end color #ed5fa6.

Let's find an explicit formula for the sequence.

Remember that we can represent a sequence whose first term is start color #0d923f, A, end color #0d923f and common difference is start color #ed5fa6, B, end color #ed5fa6 with the standard explicit form start color #0d923f, A, end color #0d923f, plus, start color #ed5fa6, B, end color #ed5fa6, left parenthesis, n, minus, 1, right parenthesis.

Therefore, an explicit formula of the sequence is a, left parenthesis, n, right parenthesis, equals, start color #0d923f, 3, end color #0d923f, start color #ed5fa6, plus, 2, end color #ed5fa6, left parenthesis, n, minus, 1, right parenthesis.

### Check your understanding

## Converting from an explicit formula to a recursive formula

### Example 1: Formula is given in standard form

We are given the following explicit formula of an arithmetic sequence.

This formula is given in the standard explicit form start color #0d923f, A, end color #0d923f, plus, start color #ed5fa6, B, end color #ed5fa6, left parenthesis, n, minus, 1, right parenthesis where start color #0d923f, A, end color #0d923f is the first term and that start color #ed5fa6, B, end color #ed5fa6 is the common difference. Therefore,

- the first term of the sequence is start color #0d923f, 5, end color #0d923f, and
- the common difference is start color #ed5fa6, 16, end color #ed5fa6.

Let's find a recursive formula for the sequence. Recall that the recursive formula gives us two pieces of information:

- The first term left parenthesiswhich we know is start color #0d923f, 5, end color #0d923f, right parenthesis
- The pattern rule to get any term from the term that comes before it left parenthesiswhich we know is "add start color #ed5fa6, 16, end color #ed5fa6"right parenthesis

Therefore, this is a recursive formula for the sequence.

### Example 2: Formula is given in simplified form

We are given the following explicit formula of an arithmetic sequence.

Note that this formula is

*given in the standard explicit form start color #0d923f, A, end color #0d923f, plus, start color #ed5fa6, B, end color #ed5fa6, left parenthesis, n, minus, 1, right parenthesis.***not**For this reason, we can't simply use the structure of the formula to find the first term and the common difference. Instead, we can find the first two terms:

Now we can see that the first term is start color #0d923f, 12, end color #0d923f and the common difference is start color #ed5fa6, 2, end color #ed5fa6.

Therefore, this is a recursive formula for the sequence.

### Check your understanding

### Challenge problem

## Want to join the conversation?

- which formula is more suitable to use recursive or explicit?(31 votes)
- I assume that the recursive is useful when we can't express a sequence in the explicit.(12 votes)

- why will

j(1)=114

j(n)=j(n−1)+13

not work as an answer for 101 114 127?(9 votes)- Because the first term is 101 and not 114(8 votes)

- What if there isn't a constant common difference;

say the number doubles every step?

We cannot plug in the value of B

Please Help!!

Have a test coming up(5 votes)- Arithmetic sequences use addition or subtraction to get the next term in the sequence. It sounds like you have a geometric sequence which uses multiplication or division to get to the next item in the sequence. Geometric sequences are covered at this link: https://www.khanacademy.org/math/algebra/sequences/introduction-to-geometric-sequences/v/geometric-sequences-introduction(6 votes)

- Hi! How do you obtain an explicit formula from the recursive formula a_n+1=1/((a_n)+1) where a_1=1(3 votes)
- What if it doesn't provide a(1)? My question says "What is the recursive formula for the sequence defined by the explicit equation a(n)=15-3n?

Please help!!(2 votes)- I am providing this answer for anyone else who might need it. so if you need to find the a(1) and the common difference, you must use the standard explicit formula such a(n)=a(1)+d(common difference)*(n-1). So when you have equivalent formulas, you need to reform it back to the standard formula to be able to find the a(1) and d (common difference). In your case, I will reformat a(n)=15-3n as follows: a(n)=15-3(n-1)-3 ==> a(n)=12-3(n-1). As you can see, this final conversion is the standard explicit equation. so a(1)=12 and common difference = -3. Hope this helps someone!(1 vote)

- Is it right if we say that when we are given a formula in simlified form like the one in exapmle two ( f(n)=a+bn ), the explicit form of the sequence is h(n)=(a+b)+b(n-1) because:

a+bn= a+b-b+bn = (a+b)+b(n-1) ??(2 votes)- The explicit formula in standard form is a(n)=a(1)+b(n-1).(2 votes)

- none of this makes sense! please make a video...(2 votes)
- I had this question:

*f(1)= −71*

f(n) = f(n−1)⋅4.2

Find an explicit formula for f(n)

And I answered*f(n) = -71⋅4.2(n-1)*, but it said the answer was*f(n) = -71⋅4.2^(n-1)*. I haven't done recursive/explicit forms before (I guess I just skipped them in Algebra 1) so could someone shed some light here?(1 vote) - how is this applicable in real life?(1 vote)
- for the last question wouldnt it be 88-13n(1 vote)
- Sorry, but that doesn't work. Look at the sequence. To get from 101 to 114, you add 13. To get from 114 to 127, you add 13. Your version is subtracting 12.

Also, the first term in the sequence is 101, not 88.

Click on the "I need help" link under the problem for more info.

Hope this helps.(1 vote)