What Are the Circle Theorems? (Mathematics Lesson)
What Are the Circle Theorems?Circles have properties relating to angles and lines.
There are several circle theorems that apply to all circles.
A Tangent and a Radius Meet at 90°The tangent makes 90° with the radius which it meets at the point at which it touches.
Read more about the circle theorem where a tangent meets a radius at 90 degrees
Two Radii Form an Isosceles TriangleTwo radii form the two equal sides of an isosceles triangle.
(Note: Radii is the plural of radius.)
Read more about the circle theorem where two radii make an isosceles triangle
The Perpendicular Bisector of a Chord Passes Through the Center of the CircleIf a line cuts through a chord of the circle, such that it crosses it at 90° and cuts it in half, that line passes through the centre of the circle.
Read more about the circle theorem where a perpendicular bisector of a chord passes through the center
The Angle at the Center of a Circle Is Twice the Angle at the CircumferenceThe angle subtended by an arc at the center of a circle is twice the angle subtended by the same arc at the circumference.
Read more about the circle theorem where the angle at the center is twice the angle at the circumference
The Angle in a Semicircle Is 90°A triangle drawn from two ends of a diameter makes 90° at the circumference.
Read more about the circle theorem where the angle in a semicircle is 90°
Angles in the Same Segment Are EqualAll triangles drawn from a chord make the same angle at the circumference.
Read more about the circle theorem where the angles in the same segment are equal
Opposite Angles in a Cyclic Quadrilateral Add Up to 180°A cyclic quadrilateral is a 4 sided shape where each corner touches the circle. Both pairs of opposite angles add up to 180°.
Read more about the circle theorem where the angles in a cyclic quadrilateral add up to 180°
Tangents from the Same Point Are the Same LengthTwo tangents drawn from the same point outside of the circle are the same length and form two congruent right triangles.
Read more about the circle theorem where the tangents from the same point are the same length
The Angle Between a Tangent and a Chord is Equal to the Angle in the Alternate SegmentThe angle between a tangent and a chord at the point of contact is equal to the angle in the alternate segment.
Read more about the circle theorem where the angle between a tangent and a chord is equal to the angle in the alternate segment
NoteWHAT IS A CIRCLE?
A circle is a shape containing a set of points that are all the same distance from a given point, its center.
PARTS OF A CIRCLETo understand the circle theorems, it is important to know the parts of a circle.
USEFUL DEFINITIONSHere are some useful definitions of some words used to explain the circle theorems.
- Perpendicular: means at right angles (90°) to.
- Bisector: to bisect means to divide into two equal parts.
- Subtended angle: the angle subtended by an arc is the angle between the lines drawn from the ends of the arc to the same point.
- Semicircle: half a circle.
- Cyclic quadrilateral: a four sided shape where each of the 4 corners lie on the circumference of a circle.
- Alternate segment: the alternate segment of a chord is formed by drawing lines from each end of the chord to a point on the circumference of the circle.