What Does a Non-Linear Equation Mean in Math Terms?

By Bon Crowder

Non-linear equations in math is one that does not form a straight line when graphed. Find out what a non-linear equation means in math with help from an experienced mathematics educator in this free video clip.


What is a non-linear equation mean in Math terms? I'm Bon Crowder and we're talking about non-linear equations. So, first, a non-linear equation is any equation that's not linear, which seems a little like duh, but it's really not because sometimes things that are just the opposite or not necessarily the real definition in Math. So, anything that's not a linear equation is a non-linear equation. This is what a linear equation looks like. Anything where you have y equals some number, x plus some other number. So, sometimes they don't like this to start with, but if you can rearrange them and make them look like that, that thing is linear. So, here are some examples of non-linear guides. Y equals three x squared plus two x minus seven. Notice this little x squared, the squared, we don't have any squared in this guide. Y equals x over x minus four. This rational equation, we don't have any denominators or crazy stuff in this guide that have Xs in them. Y equals the square root of y squared plus eight. No square roots up here. And here, this one's pretty freaky; pie x to the three halves power plus 18 x to the negative e power. So, the pie doesn't really mater; that one's okay. It's the three halves power, no fractional exponents up here. Eighteen is totally cool, the x to the negative e power, no negative exponents on x and no crazy numbers e. So, those are just a handful of some non-linear equations. But remember, any equation that's not linear is non-linear. I'm Bon Crowder, have fun with it.

About the Author

Bon Crowder has taught math to over 15,000 adults in living rooms, classrooms and conferences.