How to Graph Parametric Equations on the TI-Nspire

Press [MENU]→Graph Type→Parametric to switch to parametric graphing mode. Alternatively, move to the entry line and press [CTRL][MENU]→Parametric. Next, follow these steps:

  1. Type the x-component equation, using t as the independent variable.

    TI-Nspire uses the notation x1(t) for the first x-component, x2(t) for the second x-component, and so on.

  2. Type the y-component equation, using t as the independent variable.

    TI-Nspire uses the notation y1(t) for the first y-component, y2(t) for the second y-component, and so on.

  3. Edit the interval for the variable t and the tstep increment.

    By default, parametric graphing is configured in radians with

    image0.png
  4. Press [ENTER] to graph the parametric curve.

Here is an example of a parametric graph.

image1.jpg

In the second screen, pressing [CTRL][G] hides the entry line.

The third screen uses Graph Trace (press [MENU]→Trace→Graph Trace) to trace along the graph. Each time you press

image2.png

or

image3.png

the trace moves by a value of t equal to t-step.

Many of the features of function graphing (for example, changing attributes, adding a function table, or adding geometric objects to a parametric graph) are available in parametric graphing mode.

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