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Clearly written and focused for success, the Twelfth Edition of Gustafson and Hughes’ popular book, COLLEGE ALGEBRA, provides in-depth and precise coverage, incorporated into a framework of tested teaching strategy. The authors combine carefully selected pedagogical features and patient explanations to give students a book that preserves the integrity of mathematics, yet does not discourage them with material that is confusing or too rigorous. Long respected for its ability to help students quickly master difficult problems, this book also helps them develop the skills they’ll need in future courses and in everyday life. Retaining the mathematical precision instructors have come to expect, the authors have focused on making this new edition more modern to better illustrate to students the importance of math in their world.

R. David Gustafson, Rock Valley College (Emeritus)

R. David Gustafson is Professor Emeritus of Mathematics at Rock Valley College in Illinois and has also taught extensively at Rockford College and Beloit College. He is coauthor of several best-selling mathematics textbooks, including Gustafson/Frisk/Hughes' COLLEGE ALGEBRA, Gustafson/Karr/Massey's BEGINNING ALGEBRA, INTERMEDIATE ALGEBRA, BEGINNING AND INTERMEDIATE ALGEBRA, BEGINNING AND INTERMEDIATE ALGEBRA: A COMBINED APPROACH, and the Tussy/Gustafson and Tussy/Gustafson/Koenig developmental mathematics series. His numerous professional honors include Rock Valley Teacher of the Year and Rockford's Outstanding Educator of the Year. He has been very active in AMATYC as a Midwest Vice-president and has been President of IMACC, AMATYC's Illinois affiliate. He earned a Master of Arts from Rockford College in Illinois, as well as a Master of Science from Northern Illinois University.

Jeff Hughes, Hinds Community College

Jeff Hughes has taught the college algebra course continually for the past 20 years, and his firsthand experience with students lends itself to the innovative ideas he has brought to the text. He has led the way for the addition of the new features and the revised content in COLLEGE ALGEBRA, 10E. He teaches at Hinds Community College in Mississippi.
  • HELPFUL STRATEGIES FOR STUDYING AND LEARNING CONTENT. Tip boxes appear throughout the textbook, with many providing a visual representative of the tip to help students remember it.
  • ADDITIONAL INSIGHTS INTO SPECIFIC CONTENT. Take Note boxes highlight important information in the book. The noteworthy statements often provide clarification on a specific step or concept in an example and emphasize theory which can be overlooked.
  • CRITICAL THINKING EXERCISES. These exercises encourage algebraic thinking and assess conceptual understanding. These exercises are primarily true or false. If a statement is false, students are then asked to make the necessary change to produce a true statement.
  • CUMULATIVE REVIEWS: To reinforce student learning and improve student retention of concepts, Cumulative Review Exercises appear after every two chapters. These comprehensive reviews revisit all the essential topics covered in prior chapters.
  • CAREERS IN MATHEMATICS CHAPTER OPENERS: To encourage students to explore careers that use mathematics and make a connection between math and real life, each chapter opens with Careers in Mathematics. New, exciting careers are showcased in this edition. Featuring information taken primarily from the Occupational Outlook Handbook, these snapshots include information on how professionals use math in their work and who employs them. A web address is provided, allowing students to learn more about the career.
  • COLLEGE ALGEBRA, Twelfth Edition, is fully supported by WebAssign (EWA), the powerful online homework and course management system that engages students in learning the math. WebAssign includes new end-of-chapter exercises, animated simulations, and pre-built assignments vetted by trusted subject matter experts along with robust course, section, assignment, and question settings and online testing to help instructors foster a deeper understanding of course concepts.
  • NUMBERED OBJECTIVES: Numbered learning objectives, which are listed at the beginning of each section and appear as subheadings in the section, keep students focused.
  • SELF CHECKS: Each example is followed immediately by a Self-Check exercise that actively reinforces student understanding of concepts and example solutions. The answers for students are offered at the end of each section. To assist instructors, the answers appear next to the problem in the Annotated Instructor's Edition, printed in blue.
  • GETTING READY EXERCISES: Each problem set begins with Getting Ready exercises, which test students' understanding of concepts and proper use of mathematical vocabulary. Students should be able to answer these fill-in-the blank questions before moving on to the Practice exercises.
  • COMPREHENSIVE EXERCISE SETS: The book contains more than 4,000 exercises, many new, to improve mathematical skills and cement understanding. The exercise sets--which include Getting Ready, Practice, Application, Discovery and Writing, and Review problems--progress from routine to more challenging. The mathematics in each exercise set is sound, but not so rigorous that it will confuse students.
  • CHAPTER REVIEWS AND CHAPTER TESTS: Each chapter closes with a Chapter Review and Chapter Test, giving students the best opportunity for study and exam preparation. Chapter Reviews are comprehensive and consist of three parts: definitions and concepts, examples, and review exercises. Chapter Tests cover all the important topics and yet are brief enough to emulate a "real-time" test, so students can practice not only the math but also their test-taking aptitude. As an additional quick reference, endpapers offer the important formulas and graphs developed in the book.
Sets of Real Numbers. Integer Exponents and Scientific Notation. Rational Exponents and Radicals. Polynomials. Factoring Polynomials. Rational Expressions.
Linear Equations and Rational Equations. Applications of Linear Equations. Complex Numbers. Quadratic Equations. Applications of Quadratic Equations. Other Types of Equations. Inequalities. Absolute Value. 2. FUNCTIONS AND GRAPHS.
Functions and Functional Notation. Rectangular Coordinate System and Graphing Lines. Linear Functions and Slope. Writing and Graphing Equations of Lines. Graphs of Equations and Circles. Proportion and Variation. 3. FUNCTIONS.
Graphs of Functions. Transformations of the Graphs of Functions. Piecewise-Defined Functions and Greatest-Integer Functions. Operations on Functions. Inverse functions.
Quadratic Functions. Polynomial Functions. Synthetic Division; Remainder and Factor Theorems. Decartes’ Rule of Signs and the Intermediate Value Theorem. Zeros of Polynomial Functions. Rational Functions. 5. EXPONENTIAL AND LOGARITHMIC FUNCTIONS.
Exponential Functions and Their Graphs. Applications of Exponential Functions. Logarithmic Functions and Their Graphs. Applications of Logarithmic Functions. Properties of Logarithms. Exponential and Logarithmic Equations.
Systems of Linear Equations. Gaussian Elimination and Matrix Methods. Matrix Algebra. Matrix Inversion. Determinants. Partial Fractions. Graphs of Inequalities. Linear Programming. 7. CONIC SECTIONS AND QUADRATIC SYSTEMS.
The Circle and the Parabola. The Ellipse. The Hyperbola. Solving Nonlinear Systems of Equations. 8. SEQUENCES, SERIES, AND PROBABILITY.
The Binomial Theorem. Sequences, Series, and Summation Notation. Arithmetic Sequences. Geometric Sequences. Mathematical Induction. Permutations and Combinations. Probability.
Each WebAssign online product offers the full textbook combined with a flexible and fully customizable online instructional assignments and tools.

Cengage provides a seamless user experience for Learning Management Systems (LMS) integration. Please contact your Cengage Learning Consultant for ordering information and visit our Learning Management System Integration web page on WebAssign for general information.

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Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.


Instructor's Web Site with Complete Solutions Manual

ISBN: 9781305878730
This manual contains solutions to all exercises from the text, including Chapter Review Exercises, Chapter Tests, and Cumulative Review Exercises.

Instructor's Web Site with Test Bank

ISBN: 9781305878754
The test bank includes six tests per chapter as well as three final exams. The tests are made up of a combination of multiple-choice, free-response, true/false, and fill-in-the-blank questions.

Instructor's Web Site with PowerPoint®, Image Library

ISBN: 9781305884786
Everything you need for your course in one place! This collection of product-specific lecture and class tools is available online via the instructor resource center at You'll be able to access and download materials such as PowerPoint presentations, images, instructor’s manual, videos, and more.

Cengage Learning Testing, powered by Cognero Instant Access

ISBN: 9781305882317
Cognero® is a flexible, online system that allows you to author, edit, and manage test bank content; create multiple test versions in an instant; and deliver tests from your LMS, your classroom, or wherever you want. This is available online via

Student Solutions Manual

ISBN: 9781305878747
Contains fully worked-out solutions to all of the odd-numbered exercises in the text, giving students a way to check their answers and ensure that they took the correct steps to arrive at an answer.

Annotated Instructor's Edition

ISBN: 9781305860803
Instructor Sample/Review copy of College Algebra, 12e.


Student Solutions Manual

ISBN: 9781305878747
Contains fully worked-out solutions to all of the odd-numbered exercises in the text, so you can check your answers and ensure that you took the correct steps to arrive at an answer.