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Intermediate Algebra offers a practical approach to the study of intermediate algebra concepts, consistent with the needs of today's student. The authors help students to develop a solid understanding of functions by revisiting key topics related to functions throughout the text. They put special emphasis on the worked examples in each section, treating them as the primary means of instruction, since students rely so heavily on examples to complete assignments. Many of the applications (both within the examples and exercises) are also uniquely designed so that students have an experience that is more true to life--students must read information as it appears in headline news sources and extract only the relevant information needed to solve a stated problem. This promotes the text's focus on developing better study habits, problem solving and critical thinking skills along with orienting students to think and reason mathematically. Through Intermediate Algebra, students will not only be better prepared for future math courses, they will be better prepared to solve problems and answer questions they encounter in their own lives. Available with InfoTrac® Student Collections

Laura Bracken, Lewis-Clark State College

Laura Bracken, co-author of Investigating Prealgebra and Investigating Basic College Mathematics, teaches developmental mathematics at Lewis-Clark State College. As developmental math coordinator, Laura led the process of developing objectives, standardizing assessments, and enforcing placement including a mastery skill quiz program. She has worked collaboratively with science faculty to make connections between developmental math and introductory science courses. Laura has presented at numerous national and regional conferences and currently serves as the regional representative for the AMATYC Placement and Assessment Committee. Her blog, Dev Math Diary, is at

Ed Miller, Lewis-Clark State College

Ed Miller is a professor of mathematics at Lewis-Clark State College. He earned his PhD in general topology at Ohio University in 1989. He teaches a wide range of courses, including elementary and intermediate algebra. His terms as chair of the General Education Committee, the Curriculum Committee, and the Division of Natural Sciences and Mathematics have spurred him to look at courses as part of an integrated whole rather than discrete units. A regular presenter at national and regional meetings, Ed is exploring the use of multiple choice questions as a teaching tool as well as an assessment tool.
  • Functions early and often. The authors introduce several key concepts related to functions in Chapter 3 and then revisited in more depth in later chapters, where appropriate. The concepts include domain, range, maximum, minimum, zeros, evaluating functions, and translating functions. These concepts appear as soon as students complete their review of elementary algebra and their initial work with polynomials.
  • Find the Mistake. The section-ending exercise sets include Find the Mistake exercises. Each exercise is a problem and a step-by-step solution which includes one mistake. Students are asked to identify the error and then rework the problem correctly. These exercises help students learn how to find errors in their own work which improves student persistence and self-sufficiency.
  • Learning the Language of Math. Vocabulary matching exercises that appear before the section-ending exercises help students improve their knowledge of vocabulary and notation.
  • Checking for Accuracy and Reasonableness. To be successful in mathematics and other disciplines, an important skill for students to develop is checking their work for reasonability and accuracy. The explanations of reasonability in examples of the Five Steps and the checking of solutions in many of the worked examples provide a model for students learning to reflect on their own work. Being able to justify an answer helps students develop confidence and self-sufficiency.
  • Using Technology. For instructors who wish to integrate calculator technology, optional scientific and graphing calculator instruction is provided at the end of selected sections, where appropriate. The instruction that appears within the Using Technology boxes includes examples with keystrokes, screen shots, and Practice Problems. Follow-up Technology exercises appear at the end of section-ending exercises for continued practice.
  • End-of-Chapter Study Plan and Review Exercises. This tool offers students an effective and efficient way to prepare for quizzes or exams. The Study Plan, appearing at the end of each chapter, includes study tables for each section that will help students get organized as they prepare for a test or quiz. Each table contains a set of Can I? questions, based on the section objectives, for self-reflection. Can I? questions are tied to one or more Review Exercises that students can use to test themselves. Examples and/or Practice Problems are also linked to each question should students need reference for review.
  • Applications with data in "as is" form. Many of the application exercises and examples reference information taken directly from headline news, research studies, or reports. The excerpts contain information that is relevant to solve the problems as well as extraneous information that requires students to read and think critically, rather than randomly "plug and chug." No bigger than "texts" or "tweets," these authentic excerpts help students develop the skill of using information found in every day media to solve problems and make decisions not only in Intermediate Algebra, but in their own lives.
  • Real Sources. Among the application problems appearing in this textbook are specially developed exercises and examples that reference information taken directly from news articles, research studies, and other fact-based sources.  Many of these applications are set up in two parts with a problem statement given first followed by an excerpt. Since the question appears first and then the  information needed to answer the question follows, students experience problem solving in a more true-to-life way. Though similar in length to texts or tweets, the authentic excerpts often contain more information than is needed to solve the applications. Students will need to think critically to select the relevant information and in doing so, practice the skills needed to solve  problems outside of the classroom.
  • Five Steps for Problem-Solving. Based on the work of George Polya, the Five Steps provide a framework for jump starting and organizing student problem solving. Step-by step worked examples throughout the textbook support students as they learn to solve a wide range of applications.
  • Unique Online Homework Problems. Consistent with the authors’ approach, unique features and problem types from the text have been integrated into the Enhanced WebAssign® online homework course that accompanies the text including the 5-Steps framework, Success in College Math, Find the Mistake and Solving Equation Exercises with Checks. Online assignments can be built by selecting from thousands of text-specific problems or can be supplemented with Extra Problems have been carefully selected from other Cengage Learning developmental mathematics series. Enhanced WebAssign engages students with immediate feedback, rich tutorial content and interactive, fully customizable eBooks (YouBook) helping students to develop a deeper conceptual understanding of their subject matter.
  • InfoTrac® Student Collections are specialized databases expertly drawn from the Gale Academic One library. Each InfoTrac® Student Collection enhances the student learning experience in the specific course area related to the product. These specialized databases allow access to hundreds of scholarly and popular publications - all reliable sources - including journals, encyclopedias, and academic reports. Learn more and access at:
  • Success in College Mathematics. To help students transition to college-level mathematics, Success in College Mathematics appear at the beginning of each chapter and address topics such as personal responsibility, study skills, and time management. Follow-up exercises appear at the end of each section to help students reflect on their own attitudes and habits and how they can improve their performance.
  • Examples with Step-by-step Explanation. Each step of the worked examples is accompanied by an annotation that explains how the solution progresses, from the first line to the final answer. Color-coding and boldface are also used to help students easily identify the operation that occurs in each step, enabling the text to act as tutor when students are not in the classroom.
  • Side-by-Side Examples. To help students apply their knowledge of arithmetic to algebra, some of the worked examples are set up side-by -side with shared annotations. In this format, students can more readily see how certain principles and procedures are used repeatedly in both arithmetic and algebra.
  • Practice Problems. Following a set of worked examples in each section are a set of Practice Problems that mirror the examples. Students can use the Practice Problems to check their understanding of the concepts or skills presented.
  • Problem Solving: Practice and Review. Found in the majority of the section-ending exercise sets are a set of four applications-based exercises called Problem-Solving: Practice and Review. Because these problems do not necessarily involve the concepts or skills taught in the section, students need to think critically about the information and relationships in the problem.
Success in College Mathematics: Personal Responsibility. Sets and Numerical Expressions. Algebraic Expressions. Equations and Inequalities in One Variable. Scientific Notation and Unit Analysis. Applications and Problem Solving. Slope and Linear Equations in Two Variables. Writing the Equation of a Line. Linear Inequalities in Two Variables. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 1. Chapter Test.
Success in College Mathematics: Studying for Tests. Adding, Subtracting, and Multiplying Polynomial Expressions. Factoring Polynomials: Greatest Common Factor and Grouping. Factoring Trinomials: Trinomials and a Strategy for Factoring Completely. Polynomial Equations. Absolute Value Equations. Conjunctions, Disjunctions, and Absolute Value Inequalities. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 2. Chapter Test.
Success in College Mathematics: Problem Solving. Introduction to Relations and Functions. Linear and Constant Functions. Quadratic and Cubic Functions. Polynomial Models. Absolute Value Functions. Translation of Polynomial Functions. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 3. Chapter Test. Cumulative Review Chapters 1-3.
Success in College Mathematics: Finding and Learning from Mistakes. Systems of Linear Equations. Algebraic Methods. Applications. Systems of Linear Equations in Three Variables. Matrix Methods. Systems of Linear Inequalities. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 4. Chapter Test.
Success in College Mathematics: Making Connections. Simplifying, Multiplying, and Dividing Rational Expressions. Adding and Subtracting Rational Expressions. Complex Rational Expressions. Rational Equations in One Variable. Rational Functions. Variation. Division of Polynomials; Synthetic Division. Rational Inequalities. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 5. Chapter Test.
Success in College Mathematics: Keys for Success Introduction to Radicals. Adding, Subtracting, Multiplying and Simplifying Radical Expressions. Dividing Radical Expressions and Conjugates. Rational Exponents. Radical Equations. Radical Functions. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 6. Chapter Test. Cumulative Review Chapters 4-6.
Success in College Mathematics: Planning for the Future. Complex Numbers. Solving Quadratic Equations. Completing the Square. Quadratic Formula. Quadratic Functions. Vertex Form of a Quadratic Function. Quadratic Inequalities. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 7. Chapter Test.
Success in College Mathematics: Final Exams. Operations with Functions and One-to-One Functions. Exponential Functions. Inverse Functions and Logarithmic Functions. Natural Logarithms and Logarithm Rules. Applications. Exponential Equations. Logarithmic Equations. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 8. Chapter Test.
Success in College Mathematics: Why Study Mathematics? Distance Formula, Midpoint Formula, and Circles. Ellipses. Parabolas. Hyperbolas. Systems of Non-Linear Equations in Two Variables. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 9. Chapter Test. Cumulative Review Chapters 7-9.
Success in College Mathematics: Look Back. Sequences and Series. Arithmetic Sequences. Geometric Sequences. The Binomial Theorem. Study Plan for Review of Chapter 10. Chapter Test. Cumulative Review Chapters 1-10.
1: Reasonability and Problem Solving. 2: Determinants and Cramer’s Rule. 3: Developing the Equations of Conic Sections.
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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"I really like [Bracken and Miller's Intermediate Algebra]…. The book's composition is well-thought of and it is evident that a lot of expertise and experience has been interjected in its composition. The book delivers on what it promises in every aspect."

"The exposition is very good, with nice examples"

"[Bracken and Miller's Intermediate Algebra] deserves high marks for clarity, explicitness and readability."

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.


Solutions Manual

ISBN: 9781285092164
The Complete Solutions Manual provides worked-out solutions to all of the problems in the text.

PowerLecture with ExamView®

ISBN: 9781285092249
This CD-ROM (or DVD) provides the instructor with dynamic media tools for teaching. Create, deliver, and customize tests (both print and online) in minutes with ExamView® Computerized Testing Featuring Algorithmic Equations. Easily build solution sets for homework or exams using Solution Builder's online solutions manual. Microsoft® PowerPoint® lecture slides and figures from the book are also included on this CD-ROM (or DVD) along with the PowerPoint versions of the parallel Classroom Examples available in the Annotated Instructor's Edition. A graphing calculator appendix detailing specific calculator commands also appears along with additional support materials for use specifically with the textbook.

Student Solutions Manual

ISBN: 9781285092171
The Student Solutions Manual provides worked-out solutions to the odd-numbered problems in the textbook.

Student Workbook

ISBN: 9781285092225
The Student Workbook contains all of the assessments, activities, and worksheets from the Instructor's Resource Binder to help your students maximize their study efforts.


Student Solutions Manual

ISBN: 9781285092171
The Student Solutions Manual provides worked-out solutions to the odd-numbered problems in the textbook.

Student Workbook

ISBN: 9781285092225
The Student Workbook contains all of the assessments, activities, and worksheets from the Instructor's Resource Binder to help your students maximize their study efforts.