Set the polynomial equal to <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>y</mi></mstyle></math> to find the properties of the parabola.

Use the vertex form, <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>y</mi><mo>=</mo><mi>a</mi><msup><mrow><mo>(</mo><mi>x</mi><mo>-</mo><mi>h</mi><mo>)</mo></mrow><mrow><mn>2</mn></mrow></msup><mo>+</mo><mi>k</mi></mstyle></math> , to determine the values of <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>a</mi></mstyle></math> , <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>h</mi></mstyle></math> , and <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>k</mi></mstyle></math> .

Since the value of <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>a</mi></mstyle></math> is positive, the parabola opens up.

Opens Up

Find the vertex <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mrow><mo>(</mo><mi>h</mi><mo>,</mo><mi>k</mi><mo>)</mo></mrow></mstyle></math> .

Find the distance from the vertex to a focus of the parabola by using the following formula.

Substitute the value of <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>a</mi></mstyle></math> into the formula.

Cancel the common factor of <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mn>1</mn></mstyle></math> .

Cancel the common factor.

Rewrite the expression.

The focus of a parabola can be found by adding <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>p</mi></mstyle></math> to the y-coordinate <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>k</mi></mstyle></math> if the parabola opens up or down.

Substitute the known values of <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>h</mi></mstyle></math> , <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>p</mi></mstyle></math> , and <math><mstyle displaystyle="true"><mi>k</mi></mstyle></math> into the formula and simplify.

Find the axis of symmetry by finding the line that passes through the vertex and the focus.

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