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What's an "arctan"? Are there any good, not overly complicated, websites about this?

Discussion in 'MCAT Study Question Q&A' started by Gauss44, Sep 7, 2014.

  1. Gauss44

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    What's an "arctan"?

    I've been searching the internet for an answer and the only answers I can find are super complicated.... Can you provide an MCAT level explanation or point me to a good website if you know of one?

    (PS - I already scored a 12 on the real physical sciences section of the MCAT. Still don't know about "arctan.")
     
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  3. Cawolf

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    I am assuming you mean the trig function arctangent, the inverse trig function of tangent.

    In the simplest MCAT terms it is the "opposite of tangent" - it spits out an angle rather than a length.

    Like tan (theta) = opposite/adjacent

    and arctan (opposite/adjacent) = theta

    I want to add that there is much more about it you could say, if someone is going to correct me.
    :)

    Also I found http://www.purplemath.com/modules/invratio.htm to be a decent site when I was taking math.
     
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  4. Gauss44

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    Yes, so for the sake of the MCAT, I think remembering that arctangent=theta/(opposite/adjacent) should be enough. Let me know if you disagree.

    Thanks for your help!
     
  5. Cawolf

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    I disagree. You can't divide by the inside of a trig function.

    arctan (opposite/adjacent) = theta

    reads

    Arctangent OF opposite divided by adjacent is equal to the angle theta.
     

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