**Completing the Square**

An equation in which one side is a perfect square trinomial can be easily solved by taking the square root of each side.

Consider the example at the right:

It is this method of solution that is the basis of a process called “completing the square”.

**Consider the equation**: .

Our solution strategy will be to “force” a perfect square trinomial of the form

on the left hand side of the equation.

This method of “forcing” the existence of a perfect square trinomial is completing the square.

**Steps for Completing the Square**:

Examples: Solve each example by completing the square.