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The straight line part 2

Medians, altitudes and perpendicular bisectors

Triangles

At this stage in the course there are three special lines in a triangle that you need to know about: medians, altitudes and perpendicular bisectors.

Triangle with three medians

Triangle with three medians

A median joins a vertex to the midpoint of the opposite side. The diagram shows all three medians which are concurrent at a point called the centroid.

Triangle with three altitudes

Triangle with three altitudes

An altitude passes through a vertex and is at right-angles to the opposite side. The diagram shows all three altitudes which are concurrent at a point called the orthocentre.

Triangle showing three perpindicular bisectors

Triangle showing three perpindicular bisectors

A perpendicular bisector passes through the midpoint of a side and at right-angles to that side. The diagram shows all three perpendicular bisectors which are concurrent at a point called the circumcentre (the centre of the surrounding circle).

Make sure you know the difference between these types of line. It's easy to get them confused, so take the time to learn their names and properties.

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