What is a coefficient ?

Vosh

When someone asks, "what is the coefficient of something...?" what do they mean? What is a coefficient (besides the number placed in front of a variable)?

HallsofIvy

Okay, "besides a number placed in front of a variable", a coefficient is a number multiplying a variable! That's the definition. If you want more than that you won't get it.

Vosh

Originally posted by HallsofIvy
Okay, "besides a number placed in front of a variable", a coefficient is a number multiplying a variable! That's the definition. If you want more than that you won't get it.

So when someone says, "what's the coefficient of so and so?" they are wanting to know by what factor so and so multiplies itself? If something in action increases itself in muliples of two, then the coefficient of that something is 2? The word "coefficient" sounds more elaborate than it is...

"What is a coefficient ?"

Physics Forums Values

We Value Quality
• Topics based on mainstream science
• Proper English grammar and spelling
We Value Civility
• Positive and compassionate attitudes
• Patience while debating
We Value Productivity
• Disciplined to remain on-topic
• Recognition of own weaknesses
• Solo and co-op problem solving