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Finding Complex Roots: Can You Trust Your Calculator?

Barbara Ciesla, John Watson 

January 2006, Volume 99, Issue 5, Page 366

Abstract:
This article investigates a specific instance when the textbook answer for finding a root of a complex number differed with the answer given by the TI-83. After explaining the reason for the difference the article then expands the definition of the integral root of a complex number to an arbitrary complex power of a complex number. Read now to see where false assumptions might be made based on the results of a calculator and see explanations of how to overcome those assumptions with logic and proof.

Keywords:
Article
Computers
Teacher Education
Grades 9-12
Graphing
Complex Numbers
Teacher
Problems
Problem Solving / Problem Posing
Reasoning and Proof