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Coefficients of the Characteristic Polynomial

by Louis L. Pennisi (University of Illinois at Chicago)

This article originally appeared in:
Mathematics Magazine
February, 1987

Subject classification(s): Algebra and Number Theory | Linear Algebra
Applicable Course(s): 3.3 Mainstream Calculus III, IV | 4.13 Advanced Linear Algebra

The author derives formulas for the coefficients of the characteristic polynomial of a square matrix in terms of the partial derivatives of its determinant, which is viewed as a function of the entries of the matrix.

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Capsule Course Topic(s):
Linear Algebra | Characteristic Polynomial
Multivariable Calculus | Partial Derivatives, Differentiability
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