What are your chances of acceptance?
Your chance of acceptance
Duke University
Loading…
UCLA
Loading…
+ add school
Your chancing factors
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
1.0
4.0
SAT: 720 math
200
800
| 800 verbal
200
800

Extracurriculars

Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

Understanding independent and dependent variables?

Hi, can someone explain the difference between independent and dependent variables in an easy-to-understand way? Also, any tips on how to identify these quickly in various types of problems, whether it's math or science? Thanks!

7 months ago

Hey there! I'd be happy to help you out with understanding independent and dependent variables. In the simplest terms, an independent variable is the one that you can manipulate or change, while the dependent variable is the one that reacts or is influenced by the independent variable.

Think of the independent variable as the 'cause' and the dependent variable as the 'effect.' The dependent variable is named the way it is because it "depends" on the manipulations in the independent variable.

To identify them quickly in problems, keep in mind that the independent variable is often found on the x-axis, and the dependent variable on the y-axis. In a science experiment, for example, the independent variable might be the amount of fertilizer used on plants, while the dependent variable could be the growth of the plants.

In this example, you're controlling the fertilizer (independent variable) and measuring the plant growth (dependent variable) based on the amount of fertilizer used. I hope this explanation helps you out! Feel free to ask if you have any more questions.

7 months ago

About CollegeVine’s Expert FAQ

CollegeVine’s Q&A seeks to offer informed perspectives on commonly asked admissions questions. Every answer is refined and validated by our team of admissions experts to ensure it resonates with trusted knowledge in the field.