Illuminations: Determining Functions Using Regression

# Determining Functions Using Regression

This unit guides students though activities that ask students to collect data. Then, they use technology to find functions that best describe a data collected. After analyzing the data, the student should be able to determine a best type of function to describe the trend. This unit is adapted from an article by Jill Stevens that originally appeared in the September 1993 issue of the Mathematics Teacher.

### Prerequisite Knowledge

Knowledge of at least some of the following categories of functions:
• Linear
• Exponential
• Logarithmic
• Sine and Cosine

### Individual Lessons

Lesson 1 - Using a Calculator for Finding the Equation of a Function

To determine the function of best fit for a set of data, students should recognize which category of function bests fit the data and know how to use technology to obtain a function. This lesson teaches these skills and prepares students for the subsequent lesson(s), in which they will collect their own data.

Instructions on using TI83 and TI84 calculators for regression is available here.

Lesson 2 - What's the Function?

This activity allows students to look for functions within a given set of data. After analyzing the data, students should be able to determine what type of function best represents the data.

### NCTM Resources

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