# Method of undetermined coefficients for PreRMO, PRMO and IITJEE Foundation maths

1. Find out when the expression $x^{3}+px^{2}+qx+r$ is exactly divisible by $x^{2}+ax+b$

Solution 1:

Let $x^{3}+px^{2}+qx+r=(x^{2}+ax+b)(Ax+B)$ where A and B are to be determined in terms of p, q, r, a and b. We can assume so because we know from the fundamental theorem of algebra that the if the LHS has to be of degree three in x, the remaining factor in RHS has to be linear in x.

So, expanding out the RHS of above, we get:

$x^{3}+px^{2}+qx+r=Ax^{3}+aAx^{2}+bAx+Bx^{2}+Bax+bB$

$x^{3}+px^{3}+qx+r=Ax^{3}+(aA+B)x^{2}+x(bA+aB)+bB$

We are saying that the above is true for all values of x: hence, coefficients of like powers of x on LHS and RHS are same; we equate them and get a system of equations:

$A=1$

$p=aA+B$

$bA+aB=q$

$bB=r$

Hence, we get $p=a+\frac{r}{b}$ and $bp-ba=r$ or that $b(p-a)=r$

Also, $b+aB=q$ so that $q=b+\frac{ar}{b}$ which means $q-b=\frac{a}{b}r$

but $\frac{r}{b}=B=p-a$ and hence, $q-b=\frac{a}{b}(p-a)$

So, the required conditions are $b(p-a)=r$ and $q-b=\frac{a}{b}(p-a)$.

2) Find the condition that $x^{2}+px+q$ may be a perfect square.

Solution 2:

Let $x^{2}+px+q=(Ax+B)^{2}$ where A and B are to be determined in terms of p and q; finally, we obtain the relationship required between p and q for the above requirement.

$x^{2}+px+q=A^{2}x^{2}+B^{2}+2ABx$ which is true for all real values of x;

Hence, $A^{2}=1$ so $A=1$ or $A=-1$

Also, $B^{2}=q$ and hence, $B=\sqrt{q}$ or $B=-\sqrt{q}$

Also, $2AB=p$ so that $2\sqrt{q}=p$ so $q=\frac{p^{2}}{4}$, which is the required condition.

3) To prove that $x^{4}+px^{3}+qx^{2}+rx+s$ is a perfect square if $(q-\frac{p^{2}}{4})^{2}=4s$ and $r^{2}=p^{2}s$.

Proof 3:

Let $x^{4}+px^{3}+qx^{2}+rx+s=(Ax^{2}+Bx+C)^{2}$

$x^{4}+px^{3}+qx^{2}+rx+s=A^{2}x^{4}+B^{2}x^{2}+C^{2}+2ABx^{3}+2BCx+2ACx^{2}$

$A^{2}=1$

$2AB=p$

$q=B^{2}+2AC$

$2BC=r$

$C^{2}=s$

$A=1$ or $A=-1$

$2AB=p \longrightarrow 2B=p \longrightarrow B=\frac{p}{2}$

$q=B^{2}+2AC=\frac{p^{2}}{4}+2\times \sqrt{s} \longrightarrow (q-\frac{p^{2}}{4})^{2}=4s$

$2 \times \frac{p}{2} \times \sqrt{s}=r \longrightarrow r^{2}=p^{2}s$

More later,

Nalin Pithwa.

PS: Note in the method of undetermined coefficients, we create an identity expression which is true for all real values of x.

# Check your mathematical induction concepts

Discuss the following “proof” of the (false) theorem:

If n is any positive integer and S is a set containing exactly n real numbers, then all the numbers in S are equal:

PROOF BY INDUCTION:

Step 1:

If $n=1$, the result is evident.

Step 2: By the induction hypothesis the result is true when $n=k$; we must prove that it is correct when $n=k+1$. Let S be any set containing exactly $k+1$ real numbers and denote these real numbers by $a_{1}, a_{2}, a_{3}, \ldots, a_{k}, a_{k+1}$. If we omit $a_{k+1}$ from this list, we obtain exactly k numbers $a_{1}, a_{2}, \ldots, a_{k}$; by induction hypothesis these numbers are all equal:

$a_{1}=a_{2}= \ldots = a_{k}$.

If we omit $a_{1}$ from the list of numbers in S, we again obtain exactly k numbers $a_{2}, \ldots, a_{k}, a_{k+1}$; by the induction hypothesis these numbers are all equal:

$a_{2}=a_{3}=\ldots = a_{k}=a_{k+1}$.

It follows easily that all $k+1$ numbers in S are equal.

*************************************************************************************

Regards,

Nalin Pithwa

# Miscellaneous Algebra: pRMO, IITJEE foundation maths 2019

For the following tutorial problems, it helps to know/remember/understand/apply the following identities (in addition to all other standard/famous identities you learn in high school maths):

$a^{3}+b^{3}+c^{3}-3abc=(a+b+c)(a^{2}+b^{2}+c^{2}-ab-bc-ca)$

By the way, I hope you also know how to derive the above.Let me mention two methods to derive the above :

Method I: Using polynomial division in three variable, divide the dividend $a^{3}+b^{3}+c^{3}-3abc$ by the divisor $a+b+c$.

Method II: Assume that $P(X)$ is a polynomial with roots a, b and c. So, we know by the fundamental theorem of algebra that $P(X)=(X-a)(X-b)(X-c)$. Now, we also know that a, b and c satisfy P(X). Now, proceed further and complete the proof.

Let us now work on the tutorial problems below:

1) If $2s=a+b+c$, prove that $\frac{1}{s-a} + \frac{1}{s-b} + \frac{1}{s-c} = \frac{abc}{s(s-a)(s-b)(s-c)}$

2) If $x^{2}+a^{2}=2(xy+yz+zu-y^{2}-z^{2})$, prove that $x=y=z=u$.

Prove the following identities:

3) $b(x^{3}+a^{3})+ax(x^{2}-a^{2})+a^{3}(x+a)=(a+b)(x+a)(x^{2}-ax+a^{2})$

4) $(ax+by)^{2}+(ay-bx)^{2}+c^{2}x^{2}+c^{2}y^{2}=(x^{2}+y^{2})(a^{2}+b^{2}+c^{2})$

5) $(x+y)^{3}+ 3(x+y)^{2}z+3(x+y)z^{2}+z^{3}=(x+z)^{3}+3(x+z)^{2}y+3(x+z)y^{2}+y^{3}$

6) $(a+b+c)(ab+bc+ca)-abc=(a+b)(b+c)(c+a)$

7) $(a+b+c)^{2}-a(b+c-a)-b(a+c-b)-c(a+b-c)=2(a^{2}+b^{2}+c^{2})$

8) $(x-y)^{3}+(x+y)^{3}+3(x-y)^{2}(x+y)+3(x+y)^{2}(x-y)=8x^{3}$

9) $x^{2}(y-z)+y^{2}(z-x)+z^{2}(x-y)+(y-z)(z-x)(z-y)=0$

10) $a^{3}(b-c)+b^{3}(c-a)+c^{3}(a-b)=-(b-c)(c-a)(a-b)(a+b+c)$

11) Prove that $(b-c)^{3}+(c-a)^{3}+(a-b)^{3}=3(b-c)(c-a)(a-b)$

12) If3 $2s=a+b+c$, prove that $(s-a)^{2}+(s-b)^{2}+(s-c)^{2}+s^{2}=a^{2}+b^{2}+c^{2}$

13) If $2s=a+b+c$, prove that $(s-a)^{3}+(s-b)^{3}+(s-c)^{3}+3abc=s^{3}$

14) If $2s=a+b+c$, prove that $16s(s-a)(s-b)(s-c)=2b^{2}c^{2}+2c^{2}a^{2}+2a^{2}b^{2}-a^{4}-b^{4}-c^{4}$

15) If   $2s=a+b+c$, then prove that  $2(s-a)(s-b)(s-c)+a(s-b)(s-c)+b(s-c)(s-a)+c(s-a)(s-b)=abc$

16) If $a+b+c=0$, then prove that $(2a-b)^{3}+(2b-c)^{3}+(2c-a)^{3}=3(2a-b)(2b-c)(2c-a)$

17) If $a+b+c=0$, then prove that $\frac{a^{2}}{2a^{2}+bc} + \frac{b^{2}}{2b^{2}+ca} + \frac{c^{2}}{2c^{2}+ab} =1$

18) Prove that $(x+y+z)^{3}+(x+y-z)^{3}+(x-y+z)^{3}+(x-y-z)^{3}=4x(x^{2}+3y^{2}+3z^{2})$

19) If $a+b+c=0$ prove that $(s+3a)^{3}-(s-3b)^{3}-(s-3c)^{3}-3(s-3a)(s-3b)(s-3c)=0$

20) If $X=b+c-2a$, $Y=c+a-2b$, $Z=a+b-2c$, find the value of $X^{2}+Y^{2}+Z^{2}-3XYZ$

21) Prove that $(a-b)^{2}+(b-c)^{2}+(c-a)^{2}=2(c-b)(c-a)+2(b-a)(b-c)+2(a-b)(a-c)$

22) Prove that $a^{2}(b^{3}-c^{3})+b^{2}(c^{3}-a^{3})+c^{2}(a^{3}-b^{3})=(a-b)(b-c)(c-a)(ab+bc+ca)=a^{2}(b-c)^{3}+b^{2}(c-a)^{3}+c^{2}(a-b)^{3} = -[a^{2}b^{2}(a-b)+b^{2}c^{2}(b-c)+c^{2}a^{2}(c-a)]$

23) if $(a+b)^{2}+(b+c)^{2}+(c+a)^{2}=4(ab+bc+cd)$, prove that $a=b=c=d$.

24) If $x=a+d$, $y=b+d$, $z=c+d$, prove that $x^{2}+y^{2}+z^{2}-yz-zx-xy=a^{2}+b^{2}+c^{2}-bc-ca-ab$

25) If $a+b+c=3$, prove that $\frac{1}{b^{2}+c^{2}-a^{2}}+ \frac{1}{c^{2}+a^{2}-b^{2}} + \frac{1}{a^{2}+b^{2}-c^{2}}=0$

26) If $a+b+c=0$, simplify: $\frac{b+c}{bc}(b^{2}+c^{2}-a^{2}) + \frac{c+a}{ca} (c^{2}+a^{2}-b^{2})+ \frac{a+b}{ab}(a^{2}+b^{2}-c^{2})$

27) Prove that the equation $(x-a)^{2}+(y-b)^{2}+(a^{2}+b^{2}-1)(x^{2}+y^{2}-1)=0$ is equivalent to the equation $(ax+by-1)^{2}+(bx-ay)^{2}=0$, hence show that the only possible values of x and y are: $\frac{a}{a^{2}+b^{2}}$, $\frac{b}{a^{2}+b^{2}}$

28) If $2(x^{2}+a^{2}-ax)(y^{2}+b^{2}-by)=x^{2}y^{2}+a^{2}b^{2}$, prove that $(x-a)^{2}(y-b)^{2}+(bx-ay)^{2}=0$ and therefore that $a=x$ and $y=b$ are the only possible solutions.

Good luck for the PreRMo August 2019 !!

Regards,

Nalin Pithwa

# Cyclic expressions, fractions: Pre RMO, PRMO, IITJEE foundation 2019

In order to solve the following tutorial sheet, it helps to solve/understand and then apply the following beautiful cyclic relations or identities:

(Note if these look new to you, then you need to check the truth of all them; if all are v v familiar to you, just go ahead and crack the tutorial sheet below):

Core Identities in Cyclic Expressions:
1) $(b-c)+(c-a)+(a-b)=0$
2) $a(b-c)+b(c-a)+c(a-b)=0$
3) $a^{2}(b-c)+b^{2}(c-a)+c^{2}(a-b)=-(a-b)(b-c)(c-a)$
4) $bc(b-c)+ca(c-a)+ab(a-b)=-(a-b)(b-c)(c-a)$
5) $a(b^{2}-c^{2})+b(c^{2}-a^{2})+c(a^{2}-b^{2})=(a-b)(b-c)(c-a)$

Solve or simplify the following:

1) $\frac{a}{(a-b)(a-c)} + \frac{b}{(b-c)(b-a)} + \frac{c}{(c-a)(c-b)}$
2) $\frac{bc}{(a-b)(a-c)} + \frac{ca}{(b-c)(b-a)} + \frac{ab}{(c-a)(c-b)}$
3) $\frac{a^{2}}{(a-b)(a-c)} + \frac{b^{2}}{(b-c)(b-a)} + \frac{c^{2}}{(c-a)(c-b)}$
4) $\frac{a^{3}}{(a-b)(a-c)} + \frac{b^{3}}{(b-c)(b-a)} + \frac{c^{3}}{(c-a)(c-b)}$
5) $\frac{a(b+c)}{(a-b)(c-a)} + \frac{b(a+c)}{(a-b)(b-c)} + \frac{a(a+b)}{(c-a)(b-c)}$
6) $\frac{1}{a(a-b)(a-c)} + \frac{1}{b(b-c)(b-a)} + \frac{1}{c(c-a)(c-b)}$
7) $\frac{bc}{a(a^{2}-b^{2})(a^{2}-c^{2})} + \frac{ca}{b(b^{2}-c^{2})(b^{2}-a^{2})} + \frac{ab}{c(c^{2}-a^{2})(c^{2}-b^{2})}$
8) $\frac{(x-b)(x-c)}{(a-b)(a-c)} + \frac{(x-c)(x-a)}{(b-c)(b-a)} + \frac{(x-a)(x-b)}{(c-a)(c-b)}$
9) $\frac{bc(a+d)}{(a-b)(a-c)} + \frac{ca(b+d)}{(b-c)(b-a)} + \frac{ab(c+d)}{(c-a)(c-b)}$
10) $\frac{1}{(a-b)(a-c)(x-a)} + \frac{1}{(b-c)(b-a)(x-b)} + \frac{1}{(c-a)(c-b)(x-c)}$
11) $\frac{a^{2}}{(a-b)(a-c)(x+a)} + \frac{b^{2}}{(b-c)(b-a)(x+b)} + \frac{c^{2}}{(c-a)(c-b)(x+c)}$
12) $a^{2}\frac{(a+b)(a+c)}{(a-b)(a-c)} + b^{2}\frac{(b+c)(b+a)}{(b-c)(b-a)} + c^{2}\frac{(c+a)(c+b)}{(c-a)(c-b)}$
13) $\frac{a^{3}(b-c)+b^{3}(c-a)+c^{3}(a-b)}{(b-c)^{3}+(c-a)^{3}+(a-b)^{3}}$
14) $\frac{a^{2}(b-c)+b^{2}(c-a)+c^{2}(a-b)+2(c-a)(a-b)(b-c)}{(b-c)^{3}+(c-a)^{3}+(a-b)^{3}}$
15) $\frac{a^{3}(b-c)+b^{3}(c-a)+c^{3}(a-b)}{a^{2}(b-c)+b^{2}(c-a)+c^{2}(a-b)}$
16) $\frac{a^{2}(b-c)^{3}+b^{2}(c-a)^{3}+c^{2}(a-b)^{3}}{(a-b)(b-c)(c-a)}$
17) $\frac{\frac{b-c}{a} + \frac{c-a}{b} + \frac{a-b}{c}}{\frac{1}{a}(\frac{1}{b^{2}}-\frac{1}{c^{2}})+\frac{1}{b}(\frac{1}{c^{2}}-\frac{1}{a^{2}})+\frac{1}{c}(\frac{1}{a^{2}}-\frac{1}{b^{2}})}$^
18) $\frac{a^{2}(\frac{1}{a^{2}}-\frac{1}{b^{2}})+b^{2}(\frac{1}{a^{2}}-\frac{1}{c^{2}})+c^{2}(\frac{1}{b^{2}}-\frac{1}{a^{2}})}{\frac{1}{bc}(\frac{1}{c}-\frac{1}{b})+\frac{1}{ca}(\frac{1}{a}-\frac{1}{c})+\frac{1}{ab}(\frac{1}{b}-\frac{1}{c})}$
19) $\frac{a}{(a-b)(a-c)(x-a)} + \frac{b}{(b-c)(b-a)(x-b)} + \frac{c}{(c-a)(c-b)(x-c)}$

More later,
Nalin Pithwa

# Tutorial on Basic Set Theory and Functions: for PRMO, RMO and IITJEE Mains maths

I) Prove that every function can be represented as a sum of an even function and an odd function.

II)Let A, B, C be subsets of a set S. Prove the following statements and illustrate them with Venn Diagrams:

2a) The famous DeMorgan’s laws in their basic forms: $A^{'} \bigcup B^{'} = (A \bigcap B)^{'}$ and $A^{'} \bigcap B^{'} = (A \bigcup B)^{'}$. Assume that both sets A and B are subsets of Set S. In words, the first is: union of complements is the complement of intersection; the second is: intersection of two complements is the complement of the union of the two sets.

Sample Solution:

Let us say that we need to prove: $A^{'}\bigcap B^{'}=(A \bigcup B)^{'}$.

Proof: It must be shown that the two sets have the same elements; in other words, that each element of the set on LHS is an element of the set on RHS and vice-versa.

If $x \in A^{'} \bigcap B^{'}$, then $x \in A^{'}$ and $x \in B^{'}$. This means that $x \in S$, and $x \notin A$ and $x \notin B$. Since $x \notin A$ and $x \notin B$, hence $x \notin A \bigcup B$. Hence, $x \in (A \bigcup B)^{'}$.

Conversely, if $x \in (A \bigcup B)^{'}$, then $x \in S$  and $x \notin A \bigcup B$. Therefore, $x \notin A$ and $x \notin B$. Thus, $x \in A^{'}$ and $x \in Y^{'}$, so that $x \in A^{'} \bigcap B^{'}$. QED.

2b) $A \bigcap (B \bigcup C) = (A \bigcap B)\bigcup (A \bigcap C)$.

2c) $A \bigcup (B \bigcap C) = (A \bigcup B) \bigcap (A \bigcup C)$

III) Prove that if I and S are sets and if for each $i \in I$, we have $X_{i} \subset S$, then $(\bigcap_{i \in I} X_{i})^{'} = \bigcup_{i \in I}(X_{i})^{'}$.

Sample Solution:

It must be shown that each element of the set on the LHS is an element of the set on RHS, and vice-versa.

If $x \in (\bigcap_{i \in I} X_{i})^{'}$, then $x \in S$ and $x \notin \bigcap_{i \in I} X_{i}$. Therefore, $x \notin X_{i}$, for at least one $j \in I$. Thus, $x \in (X_{i})^{'}$, so that $x \in \bigcup_{i \in I}(X_{i})^{'}$.

Conversely, if $x \in \bigcup_{i \in I}(X_{i})^{i}$, then for some $j \in I$, we have $x \in (X_{i})^{'}$. Thus, $x \in S$ and $x \notin X_{i}$. Since $x \notin X_{i}$, we have $x \notin \bigcap_{i \in I}X_{i}$. Therefore, $x \in \bigcap_{i \in I}(X_{i})^{'}$. QED.

IV) If A, B and C are sets, show that :

4i) $(A-B)\bigcap C = (A \bigcap C)-B$

4ii) $(A \bigcup B) - (A \bigcap B)=(A-B) \bigcup (B-A)$

4iii) $A-(B-C)=(A-B)\bigcup (A \bigcap B \bigcap C)$

4iv) $(A-B) \times C = (A \times C) - (B \times C)$

V) Let I be a nonempty set and for each $i \in I$ let $X_{i}$ be a set. Prove that

5a) for any set B, we have : $B \bigcap \bigcup_{i \in I} X_{i} = \bigcup_{i \in I}(B \bigcap X_{i})$

5b) if each $X_{i}$ is a subset of a given set S, then $(\bigcup_{i \in I}X_{i})^{'}=\bigcap_{i \in I}(X_{i})^{'}$

VI) Prove that if $f: X \rightarrow Y$, $g: Y \rightarrow Z$, and $Z \rightarrow W$ are functions, then : $h \circ (g \circ f) = (h \circ g) \circ f$

VII) Let $f: X \rightarrow Y$ be a function, let A and B be subsets of X, and let C and D be subsets of Y. Prove that:

7i) $f(A \bigcup B) = f(A) \bigcup f(B)$; in words, image of union of two sets is the union of two images;

7ii) $f(A \bigcap B) \subset f(A) \bigcap f(B)$; in words, image of intersection of two sets is a subset of the intersection of the two images;

7iii) $f^{-1}(C \bigcup D) = f^{-1}(C) \bigcup f^{-1}(D)$; in words, the inverse image of the union of two sets is the union of the images of the two sets.

7iv) $f^{-1}(C \bigcap D)=f^{-1}(C) \bigcap f^{-1}(D)$; in words, the inverse image of intersection of two sets is intersection of the two inverse images.

7v) $f^{-1}(f(A)) \supset A$; in words, the inverse of the image of a set contains the set itself.

7vi) $f(f^{-1}(C)) \subset C$; in words, the image of an inverse image of a set is a subset of that set.

For questions 8 and 9, we can assume that the function f is $f: X \rightarrow Y$ and a set A lies in domain X and a set C lies in co-domain Y.

8) Prove that a function f is 1-1 if and only if $f^{-1}(f(A))=A$ for all $A \subset X$; in words, a function sends different inputs to different outputs iff a set in its domain is the same as the inverse of the image of that set itself.

9) Prove that a function f is onto if and only if $f(f^{-1}(C))=C$ for all $C \subset Y$; in words, the image of a domain is equal to whole co-domain (which is same as range) iff a set in its domain is the same as the image of the inverse image of that set.

Cheers,

Nalin Pithwa

# Tutorial on Euclidean algorithm for GCD: pre RMO or PRMO 2019

For each of the following pairs of integers a and n, show that a is relatively prime to n, or that a and n are coprime to each other:

1. a=13, n=20
2. a=69, n=89
3. a=1891, n=3797
4. a=6003722857, n=77695236973 (the Euclidean algorithm only requires 3 steps for these integers!).

Cheers,

Nalin Pithwa.

# More PreRMO or PRMO practice questions 2019

1. Find the remainder when $37^{100}$ is divided by 29.
2. Compute the last two digits of $9^{1500}$.
3. Prove for any integers a and b that $a^{2}+b^{2}$ never leaves a remainder of 3 when divided by 4.
4. Prove that the equation $a^{2}+b^{3}=3c^{2}$ has no solutions in non zero integers a, b and c.
5. Prove that the square of any odd integer always leaves a remainder of 1 when divided by 8.

More later,

Nalin Pithwa