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Homework Help: Driving me batty! CSC^4x -COT^4x; simplify.

  1. Oct 12, 2009 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    The problem is to simplify the following trig equation:

    csc^4x - cot^4x

    2. Relevant equations

    There really isn't any I can think of.

    3. The attempt at a solution

    When I attempt to simplify csc^4x - cot^4x I arrive at the result, from factoring, (csc^2x + cot^2x)(csc^2x - cot^2x). The book shows just the addition portion of my factoring. I have asked my professor and he said that I need not worry as the exam will be multiple guess?? I however am not satisfied with guessing, and would like to know if there is some fundamental rule or operation which I have overlooked. Thanks in advance and I apologize for the eq not being in a Tex format, I'm on my phone. Take care.

  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 12, 2009 #2
    You can use a pythagorean trig identity with one of the factors you have.
  4. Oct 12, 2009 #3
    Well that's embarassing... Thanks buddy. I knew it had to be something simple but I have a tendency to make things way more difficult than they are. I am assuming you were refering to csc^2x - cot^2x = 1 ?

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