**TIPS FOR FACTORING ax ^{2} + bx + c, a ≠ 1**

**a.** Always factor out the largest common factor, if one exists.

**b.** Once the common factor has been factored out of the original

trinomial, no binomial factor can contain a common factor

(other than 1 or _1).

**c.** If *c *is positive, then the signs in both binomial factors must

match the sign of *b*. (This assumes that a > 0. )

**d.** Reversing the signs in the binomials reverses the sign of the

middle term of their product.

**e.** Organize your work so that you can keep track of which

possibilities have or have not been checked.

**f.** Always check by multiplying.