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01 STS, 92 Roadmaster, 01 SLS-sold, 88 Brougham-crushed
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Discussion Starter #1
anyone here good with calculus, because im taking that right now as my math class for me senior year and we've gotten to this one thing that has me thoroughly confused.

the chain rule

i understand it went it is simple and you have one inside function and one outside function,

but when you have to use the rule multiple times for one problem, i am totally lost.

does anyone have a good way to try to explain using the chain rule multiple times in one problem?



2,721 Posts
wow, the ads on the left side of my screen are for LIVE CALCULUS ASSITANCE!! (slick Sal!)

Anyways, I have many years of calc.

Not sure exactly what you mean by mutliple times in one problem?

You can apply it by taking expressions/quantities and substiting them into the chain rule (i.e not jusy single variables)

Give google a shot, theres alot of good info out there. (best to look for sample problems)

PS At some point in your calculus life (if you do go that route) you'll need a computer to carry out these fancy ass symbolic manipulations. There are 2 software (maybe 3) that can do this: Maple, Mathematica, MathCad.

I'd say take advantage of the fact that you are a student and try and buy a copy of Mathematica (wolfram industries), its like $100 compared to the $1900 you'll have to cough up when you graduate. It will solve all your calculus/tensor/matrix/algebra/etc you'll ever encounter. If you get good at this software, you'll cruise through college (math and engineering anyways)

good luck

1,483 Posts
I know some calculus:

The chain rule is basically when you have a function INSIDE of a another function, for example if you had:


You would find y' of the sin, which is COS, and then you would find the y' of 3x, which is 3.

So you would get, COS(3x) * 3. Get it? Basically you just find the y' of the outside stuff (Sin) and then multiply it by the y' of the inside stuff (3x)...

BTY, in case you don't know, Y' is notation for the first derivative...

As for doing it multiple times in one problem, its easier than you think...

So, if I had Sin(3x) +/*/- or divide, whatever, you just need to know your rules for each one (product, quotient, etc.), you just do the chain rule on each one, then apply whatever other rules you get for the product...
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