n Learning and Teaching Mathematics - Average gradient between two points on a curve

Volume 2014, Issue 17
  • ISSN : 1990-6811


The notion of average gradient is analogous to that of average speed. In order to calculate the average speed of a vehicle between two points one would calculate the total distance travelled divided by the total time taken. This is of course a totally different matter to simply taking the average of the two speeds. Nonetheless, averaging the two instantaneous gradients to determine the average gradient between two points is a classic misconception and commonplace error at school.

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