Factoring Completely – Factoring Difference of Two Squares as Last Step

Factoring Quadratics: Advanced Factoring

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Students learn that the last step in some factoring problems is to factor the difference of two squares. For example, the trinomial x^4 + 2x^2 – 3 factors as (x^2 + 3)(x^2 – 1), and as a last step, since the binomial (x^2 – 1) represents the difference of two squares, it factors as (x + 1)(x – 1), so the final answer is (x^2 + 3)(x + 1)(x – 1).
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