Pronunciation: /ækˌsɛləˈreɪ.ʃən/ Explain
When a car accelerates, it changes speed (or
If a car is
going 20 kilometers per hour (kph), and it
accelerates to 30 kph it has changed
speed by 10 kph. Acceleration is measured
in units change in speed (velocity) per unit of time.
|Figure 1: Acceleration||
If, at a point in time, an object
is going 50 meters per second (mps)
and 10 seconds later it is going 60
mps, the object's
1 m/s2 is read as, "One meter per second squared".
Click on the blue point and drag it to change the figure.|
As acceleration increases or decreases, what happens to speed and velocity?
Advanced: Why is distance a parabola, speed a slopped line, and acceleration a horizontal line?
|Manipulative 1 - Acceleration Created with GeoGebra.||
Take an object is going 70 kph and
10 seconds later it is going 100
hours is not the same unit of measure as seconds, one must first change
the 10 seconds to hours:
So the acceleration is
Acceleration is measured using a
of speed or velocity divided by a unit of time. Speed is measured in distance divided by time.
Putting these together, speed can be measures in unit of distance divided by unit of time
squared. Some of the commonly used measures of acceleration are:
|Abbreviation||Unit of measure|
|m/h2||miles per hour squared|
|k/h2||kilometers per hour squared|
|m/s2||meters per second squared|
|Table 1: Units of Measure of Acceleration|
- McAdams, David E.. All Math Words Dictionary, acceleration. 2nd Classroom edition 20150108-4799968. pg 9-10. Life is a Story Problem LLC. January 8, 2015. Buy the book
- What is acceleration?. www.khanacademy.org. Kahn Academy. 6/18/2018. https://www.khanacademy.org/science/physics/one-dimensional-motion/acceleration-tutorial/a/acceleration-article.
- McAdams, David E.. Velocity. allmathwords.org. All Math Words Encyclopedia. Life is a Story Problem LLC. 6/19/2018. http://www.allmathwords.org/en/v/velocity.html.
Cite this article as:
McAdams, David E. Acceleration. 4/11/2019. All Math Words Encyclopedia. Life is a Story Problem LLC. http://www.allmathwords.org/en/a/acceleration.html.
4/11/2019: Changed equations and expressions to new format. (McAdams, David E.)
12/21/2018: Reviewed and corrected IPA pronunication. (McAdams, David E.)
6/18/2018: Added word link to velocity, corrected punctuation, added more information. (McAdams, David E.)
6/12/2018: Removed broken links, changed Geogebra links to work with Geogebra 5, updated license, implemented new markup. (McAdams, David E.)
12/24/2009: Added References. (McAdams, David E.)
12/13/2008: Simplified wording. (McAdams, David E.)
10/5/2008: Expanded 'More Information'. (McAdams, David E.)
9/16/2008: Corrected math error. (McAdams, David E.)
6/7/2008: Corrected spelling errors. (McAdams, David E.)
4/16/2008: Initial version. (McAdams, David E.)