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Finding the sum or an arithmetic series using summation notation
Finding the sum or an arithmetic series using summation notation

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Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Formula

The sum of arithmetic sequence with first term ‘a’ (or) a1 and common difference ‘d’ is denoted by Sn and can be calculated by one of the two formulas:

• Sn = n/2 [2a + (n – 1) d] (or)
• Sn = n/2 [a1 + an]

Before we begin to learn about the sum of the arithmetic sequence formula, let us recall what is an arithmetic sequence. An arithmetic sequence is a sequence of numbers where each successive term is a sum of its preceding term and a fixed number. This fixed number is called a common difference. So, in an arithmetic sequence, the differences between every two consecutive terms are the same. Let us learn the sum of arithmetic sequence formula with a few solved examples.

## What Is the Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Formula?

The sum of the arithmetic sequence formula is used to calculate the sum of all the terms present in an arithmetic sequence. We know that an arithmetic series of finite arithmetic sequence follows the addition of the members that are of the form (a, a + d, a + 2d, …) where “a” = the first term and “d” = the common difference.

### Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Formula

Consider an arithmetic sequence (AP) whose first term is a and the common difference is d.

Formula 1: The sum of the first n terms of an arithmetic sequence where nth term is not known is given by:

Sn = n/2 [2a + (n – 1) d]

Where

• Sn = the sum of the initial n terms of arithmetic sequence,
• a = the first term,
• d = the common difference between the terms,
• n = the total number of terms in the sequence and
• an = the last term of the sequence.

Formula 2: The sum of the first n terms of the arithmetic sequence where the nth term, Sn is known is given by:

Sn = n/2 [a1 + an]

Where

• Sn = the sum of the first n terms of the arithmetic sequence,
• a1 = the first term,
• d = the common difference,
• n = the total number of terms in the sequence and
• an = the nth term of the sequence.

## Derivation of Sum of Arithmetic Series Formula

In an arithmetic sequence, every term after the first is obtained by adding a constant, referred to as the common difference (d).

• Step 1: The nth term of an arithmetic sequence, an = a1 + (n – 1)d, where the first term is a1, the second term is a1 + d, the third term is a1 + 2d, etc and this gives the sum of series formula
Sn = a1 + (a1 + d) + (a1 + 2d) + … + [a1 + (n–1)d] _____ eq(1)
• Step 2: We can also write it as,
Sn = an + (an – d) + (an– 2d) + … + [an – (n–1)d] _____ eq(2) (i.e., the nth term and successively subtracted the common difference)
• Step 3: Add the above two equations together, we get
2Sn = n (a1 + an) ⇒ Sn = n(a1 + an )/2. Thus, Sn = n/2(a1 + an). This is one of the formulas to find the sum of arithmetic sequence.
• Step 4: Substituting an = a1 + (n – 1)d,
Sn = n/2 [a1 + a1 + (n – 1)d]
Thus, Sn = n/2 [ 2a1 + (n – 1)d], which is another formula to find the sum of arithmetic series.

## Examples Using Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Formula

Example 1: Find the sum of arithmetic sequence -4, -1, 2, 5, … up to 10 terms.

Solution:

Here, a1 = -4 and n = 10.

Using the sum of arithmetic sequence formula,

\begin{align}S_{n}&=\frac{n}{2}[2a_1+(n-1)d]\\&=\frac{10}{2}[2(-4)+(10-1)3]\\&=5 \times (-8 + 27)\\&=95\end{align}

☛Also Check: Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Calculator

Answer: Sum of arithmetic sequence -4, -1, 2, 5, … up to 10 terms = 95.

Example 2: Find the sum of 7 terms of an arithmetic sequence whose first and last terms are 10 and 40 respectively.

Solution:

Here, a1 = 10 and a7 = 40.

Using the sum of arithmetic sequence formula,

\begin{align}S_{n}&=\frac{n}{2}[a_1+a_n]\\&=\frac{7}{2}[10+40]\\&=\frac{7\times 50}{2}\\&= 7 \times 25 \\ &= 175 \end{align}

Answer: Sum of 7 terms of the given arithmetic sequence = 175.

Example 3: Using the sum of arithmetic sequence formula, calculate the sum of the first 20 terms of the sequence 1, 5, 9, 13, ……

Solution:

Here, a1 = 1, d = 4 and n = 20.

Using the sum of arithmetic series formula,

\begin{align}S_{n}&=\frac{n}{2}[2a_1+(n-1)d]\\&=\frac{20}{2}[2(1)+(20-1)4]\\&=10 \times (2 + 76)\\&=780\end{align}

Answer: Sum of arithmetic sequence 1, 5, 9, 13, …… (up to 20 terms) = 780.

## FAQs on Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Formula

### What are Different Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Formulas?

The sum of the arithmetic sequence formula:

• when nth term is not known: Sn = n/2 [2a + (n – 1) d]
• when nth term(an) is known: Sn = n/2 [a1 + an]

### How to Use the Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Formula?

We use the sum of the arithmetic sequence formula to find the sum of series formula:

• Step 1: Identify the given values: a1 = the first term, d = the common difference between the terms, n = the total number of terms in the sequence and an = the last term.
• Step 2: Put the given values in the appropriate formula, Sn = n/2 [2a + (n – 1) d] or Sn = n/2 [a1 + an]

### How to Derive the Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Formula?

The sum of the arithmetic sequence can be derived using the general term of an arithmetic sequence, an = a1 + (n – 1)d.

• Step 1: Find the first term
• Step 2: Check for the number of terms.
• Step 3: Generalize the formula for the first term, that is a1 and thus successive terms will be a1+d, a1+2d
• Step 4: Find the last term, an = a1 + (n – 1) d.
• Step 5: Find their sum. (first, by adding the terms successively and second, by combining the terms and successively subtracting the common difference)
• Step 6: Subtracting the two equations, we get the formula as Sn = n/2 [2a + (n – 1) d]

### Where can I Find Sum of Arithmetic Sequence calculator?

The sum of arithmetic sequence calculator gives you the value of the sum of the first n terms of an arithmetic series. You also require to enter the values of a and d in order to calculate the sum. Click here to find the calculator.

### What is an In the Sum of Arithmetic Sequence Formula?

In the arithmetic sequence formula, Sn = n/2 [a1 + an], an refers to the nth term of the given arithmetic sequence and it can be calculated using the formula an = a1 + (n – 1) d.

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