There are many aspects to algebra - quadratic equations, exponents and variables to name but a few. But what about graphs? Yes, they are also a part of algebra which you will study in KS3 Maths.

Graphs illustrate information that would be unwieldy in text form and act as visual shorthands for everyday concepts. There are many words, terms and expressions that relate to graphs. 'Intersect' and 'linear' for example. But what do they mean? If you want to understand the world of graphs then you are going to have to learn them all.

To help get you familiar with words and phrases used in graphs, we've come up with this quiz. In it we look at some of the terms you are likely to encounter. Let's see if you know what they mean. Take your time and think carefully before choosing your answers. And don't forget to read the helpful comments after each question. Good luck!

1.

This is an example of coordinates on a graph: (7, -9). To what do the figures refer?

Both numbers within brackets are on the same axis

Figures in brackets are always for the y axis

The x axis value, then the y axis value

The y axis value, then the x axis value

It is just SO IMPORTANT to remember this: 'x comes before y in the alphabet and the x axis figure comes before the y axis figure'

2.

A part of a line is called what?

Line part

Line piece

Line portion

Line segment

Segments are between two points on a graph

3.

If a curve on a graph is said to be 'symmetrical about the y axis', what would you expect?

Most of the curve to be in quadrant 2

Most of the curve to be in quadrant 1

None of the curve to be below the x axis

The left hand side to be a mirror image of the right hand side

The word symmetry means that one half mirrors the other half

4.

What would you expect a 'conversion graph' to do?

Convert letters into numbers

Convert one unit to another

Convert you to become a lover of graphs

Convert your family to Buddhism

It might convert miles to kilometres, grams to ounces, etc.

5.

What is the word that means to cross over?

Interscope

Intersect

Interserve

Intersport

The place where a line crosses over an axis is the place where it intersects the axis

6.

Which of these could not be shown on a 'distance-time graph'?

The number of people on a journey

The speed during part of a journey

The time spent stationary during a journey

The total time taken for a journey

Distance-time graphs are sometimes called 'travel graphs'

7.

Working out the points on a graph and putting them in the right place is known as what?

Plodding

Plonking

Plotting

Ploughing

You may have heard of ships' captains 'plotting their course'. This is marking down points on a map rather than a graph, but the principle is the same

8.

If a graph is described as 'quadratic' then what would you expect to see in the equation?

The squared sign: ^{2}

The cubed sign: ^{3}

The power of 4 sign: ^{4}

Any exponent

An exponent is a small number placed to the upper-right of a number as in 3^{2} or 4^{5}

9.

What is the meaning of the word 'gradient'?

The length of a line

The starting-point of a line

The steepness of a slope

The width of a line

You will sometimes see references to the gradient of a line in a graph. If you were walking, then a 'steep gradient' would be difficult to walk up but a 'gentle gradient' would be easy to walk up

10.

When a graph is said to be 'linear' what would you expect?

Lines that are curved

Lines that are straight

No lines, just points that have been plotted

Numerous lines starting at the same point

The dictionary definition of 'linear' is: *arranged in or extending along a straight or nearly straight line*

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