﻿ Word Problems Involving Perfect Squares
WORD PROBLEMS INVOLVING PERFECT SQUARES

Here, you will solve word problems that result in equations involving perfect squares.

EXAMPLES:
Question: I'm thinking of a number.
The square of $\,3\,$ times this number is $\,25\,$.
What number(s) could I be thinking of?
Solution:

$(3x)^2 = 25$

$3x = \pm 5$

$3x = 5\ \ \text{or}\ \ 3x = -5$

$x = \frac{5}{3}\ \ \text{or}\ \ x = -\frac{5}{3}$
Question: I'm thinking of a number.
When I take one less than three times this number, and then square the result, I end up with the number $\,25\,$.
What number(s) could I be thinking of?
Solution:

$(3x-1)^2 = 25$

$3x-1 = \pm 5$

$3x-1 = 5\ \ \text{or}\ \ 3x-1 = -5$

$3x = 6\ \ \text{or}\ \ 3x = -4$

$x = 2\ \ \text{or}\ \ x = -\frac{4}{3}$
Question: I'm thinking of a negative number.
When I take the sum of this number and $\,2\,$, and then square the result, I end up with the number $\,9\,$.
What number am I thinking of?
Solution:

$(x+2)^2 = 9$

$x+2 = \pm 3$

$x+2 = 3\ \ \text{or}\ \ x+2 = -3$

$x = 1\ \ \text{or}\ \ x = -5$

Since the number being thought of is negative, the answer is $\,-5\,$.
Question: I'm thinking of a positive number.
When I take the difference of this number and $\,3\,$, and then square the result, I end up with the number $\,16\,$.
What number am I thinking of?
Solution:

$(x-3)^2 = 16$

$x-3 = \pm 4$

$x-3 = 4\ \ \text{or}\ \ x-3 = -4$

$x = 7\ \ \text{or}\ \ x = -1$

Since the number being thought of is positive, the answer is $\,7\,$.
Master the ideas from this section

When you're done practicing, move on to:
Basic Concepts Involved in Factoring Trinomials

CONCEPT QUESTIONS EXERCISE: