Math Functions Coordinate system and quadrants

Coordinate system

To illustrate functions or to draw graphs in gerneral, it requires a coordinate system.

Cartesian coordinate system

In math we use the cartesian coordinate system.

For that we need coordinate axes, meaning two perpendicular staight lines. These are our two axes.



The vertical axis is the y-axis or ordinate. The x-axis can also be called as abscissa.

If only the positive values are important, a coordinate system can also look like this:

Koordinatensystem positiv


It is very important that you do not interchange the two axes!

In the coordinate system, you also only draw the arrows in the positive direction.


As you can see a coordinate system is divided into four quaters, called quadrants, by the axes.

The naming is done counter-clockwise.

Koordinatensystem mit Quadranten