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At a Glance - Estimating Derivatives from Tables

We can also estimate the derivative of a function f at a point a if we're given a table of values for f, but not given a formula.

A table is a great way to record what a function does as we let h get smaller and smaller. We can put as many rows into the table as we want to get a better approximations of the derivative, and make better estimates of what that limit may be.

Check out the examples and exercises to learn how.

Example 1

Use the following table of values to estimate ' (1.2).

Exercise 1

  • Estimate f ' (2.5) given the following table of values:

Exercise 2

Estimate g ' (4) given the following table of values:

Exercise 3

Estimate f ' (2) given the following table of values:

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